LUC was appointed by the Chilterns Conservation Board to provide guidance on the proposed alignment of HS2 through the Chilterns AONB. This was in the context of significant local opposition to HS2 proposals.
The project comprised two documents: Detailed Design Principles (DDP) and Additional Projects. DDP is a fully-illustrated 100-page document which provides key detailed landscape design guidance to HS2 and their design/contractor teams. It is a material consideration for submissions to local planning authorities. Additional Projects evaluates potential projects that could be facilitated such as access, hedgerow strengthening and holloway rehabilitation, and major multi-functional initiatives. It provides a shortlist of costed projects.
The aim of both documents is for maximum integration of the railway with this unique landscape using high-quality design. Our guidance is already having a significant positive impact on emerging designs, which include major viaducts and tunnel portals, noise barriers, cuttings and soft landscape. The local landscape-led approach is embedded and is evidenced by the sensitivity of the emerging designs. Pre App meetings are now productive and proposals are consistently more ‘right first time’.
LUC is now acting as landscape advisor to Chiltern and South Bucks councils and is working with HS2 contractor design teams helping to develop designs for approval and subsequent construction.