Press 03.12.2021

Plans for St Mary’s Wharf Guildford submitted to planners

Gillespies has supported Native Land in submitting proposals for St Mary’s Wharf, the redevelopment of the former Debenhams Department store in Guildford into a new sustainable residential-led development with almost an acre of newly created riverside public realm, designed by Gillespies.

St Mary’s Wharf will replace the existing department store with two new buildings of eight to nine storeys respectively, designed by architects Squire and Partners. The development will deliver 215 new homes, flexible workspaces, 21,000 sq ft of retail and restaurant space and a significant public realm that will open up access from the High Street to the River Wey for the first time in half a century.

The re-imagined public realm by Gillespies will improve permeability across the site through a series of interlinked urban spaces including a new civic square, tree-lined residential street and landscaped pocket park. A key feature of the new proposals is a publicly accessible river promenade, animated by retail and spill-out cafes that will activate the riverfront and offer new connections and intimate spaces for residents and visitors. Podium terraces on the first floor of the Riverside Building will provide additional amenity space for residents.

The new open spaces will offer valuable opportunities for cycling and walking, promoting active lifestyles and reconnecting people with nature and the river. The design, which is characterised by abundant biodiverse and sustainable planting, will extend the beautiful natural landscape and wildlife found in Shalford Park and along the River Wey into the very heart of Guildford.

Image: Squire and Partners.