; ;

Meridian Water, London

How do you bring a heavily constrained brownfield site to life?

Enfield Council is taking a pioneering approach in facilitating the transformation of Meridian Water, one of London’s largest regeneration zones next door to the Lee Valley Regional Park.

The first phase of the development is on the cusp of being realised. This will see 725 homes, and a new rail station delivered in 2019. The full scheme will ultimately deliver around 10,000 new homes and thousands of new jobs.

Arup has been supporting Enfield Council to deliver their ambitious vision for this area. Our planning and infrastructure experts have supported the council through years of detailed planning and strategy work.

Our work includes developing the planning strategy, and coordinating the planning application for Meridian Water Phase 1. Additionally we undertook the environmental impact assessment and transport assessment of Phase 1, providing strategic guidance on infrastructure requirements and strategy for the wider Meridian Water masterplan area.

Connected to this was our advice on the remediation of brownfield land, and support for the planning and design interface with the proposed new rail station. Arup also developed the infrastructure design and legal frameworks to connect the 85-hectare masterplan into the Lee Valley District Heating Network.

Arup continues to support the Council with inputs to the future development of Meridian Water and the borough.

Project Summary

2019 will see the opening of a new rail station at Meridian Water

10,000 new homes are expected to be created

725homes will be created as part of Phase 1

Overcoming site constraints

We obtained planning permission for Phase 1 of Meridian Water, on behalf of Enfield Council in July 2017.

The Phase 1 site is currently vacant land and does not contribute to the Borough’s economy or housings needs. Phase 1 and the wider Meridian Water area are constrained by flooding, contamination, poor air quality and noises issues which has depressed land values.

However, Meridian Water represents a transformative opportunity to create a new area of London. To instigate major change in such a challenging area, an innovative and comprehensive approach to the site masterplan has been fundamental.

We have supported Enfield Council by providing integrated advice on planning, transport and infrastructure to address connectivity and environmental constraints in innovative ways.

This has involved looking at alternative approaches to surface water management, assessing opportunities to underground power lines, and exploring different approaches to infrastructure funding.

"The council has an ambitious vision, and this has drawn upon and challenged the skills of a wider ranging team of our experts and external consultants to turn an underutilised yet significant brownfield site into a place where future communities will soon enjoy living, be well connected and able to live sustainably for many generations."

Christopher Tunnell, Director, Planning, Arup

Ensuring future resilience 

Meridian Water’s location near the waterways of the beautiful Lea Valley is a major opportunity, but it also poses the risk of flooding.

To ensure the scheme is viable to build and sustainable for the future, we mapped the flood risk, allowing for climate change, as well as seeking to maximise the opportunities associated with the waterways.

Our plans for flood defence measures will also enhance flood risk protection in the neighbouring London boroughs of Waltham Forest and Haringey.



A sketch of the Meridian Water station which is due to open in 2019 A sketch of the Meridian Water station which is due to open in 2019
A sketch of the Meridian Water station which is expected to open in 2019. Image © KCA/OKRA

Steering through uncertainty

Changes in scope are inevitable in a project of this scale and ambition. This added to the complexity of the planning application.

We supported the client to negotiate the tight timescales and requirements dictated by the Mayor of London’s Housing Zone funding agreement as well as the complex and evolving planning policy context at regional and local levels.

Our team was therefore required to react and respond to changes in political administrations, planning policy development and the developer procurement process.

A strong relationship with a proactive Council has been crucial to delivering this vision and building the momentum to transform Meridian Water for future generations.