Analysis of workspace provision for manufacturing, making, creative and social enterprise cluster.
Chelsea Renton, LPR 15 April 2015
The Santon plan provides 8,500m2 of workspace on the North Street site.
6,029m2 Health Centre
865m2 cultural/creative space/restaurant
300m2 double height workshops
2 LPR surveys (March 2014, updated July 2014) of the cluster of manufacturing, cultural, creative and social enterprises on North St, estimated the space they use as min 10,027m2.
A survey commissioned by Santon (Make Good Oct 2014) estimated 4,798m2 being used by the ‘creative’ workshops alone. All 3 surveys put the jobs in the ‘creative industries’ at 200+, nearly half the 450 jobs on site.
The Santon plan provides only 1,165m2 specifically for cultural, venue and creative space – a mere 300m2 as double height workshops. The presumption in the planning application is that the remainder will go elsewhere in town or to the Malling Brooks Industrial/Trade Park (where 3 or 4 of the bigger light industrial and car garages are expected to relocate).
I would argue that if this manufacturing/creative/cultural cluster sought or could afford to be on a Trade Park (not one, as yet, is planning to move there) or in the small and expensive studios in town, they would already be there.
This is a different economy with different needs that requires basic, substantial, adaptable space in close proximity to each other due to the strong interconnections* community of shared skills, machinery, space and ideas. *(see Make Good interconnections survey 2014 in Santon app and on LPR website).