Covent Garden in the market for revamp

A new package of design proposals is being prepared for Covent Garden Market’s Piazza in London, after the original £8m development plans were overturned.

Although its current owner Guardian Assurance, part of the Aegon group, now plans to sell the property, it is likely to be sold with a redesign contract in place.

Architect Lyons Sleeman Hoare, which produced the original proposals for the redevelopment and expansion of the site interiors, is working on a new package of proposals. It hopes this will satisfy the Covent Garden Area Trust, which owns the lease, English Heritage, and Westminster Council.

Concern about the expansion plans was raised by freeholders of the market, contributing to the shelving of the original scheme.

However, the rebranding of the site, incorporating a new identity created by Enterprise IG, is not likely to be affected. The branding side is being handled by retail and marketing consultant Mission Management.

In addition to signage, shopping bags and manhole covers, the new Covent Garden Market identity will also be used on a range of merchandise through a partnership deal with brand licensing agent Design Rights International.

The architect’s new proposals are likely to encompass the augmented retail spaces. The street furniture, signage and lighting, plus the general upgrades to the building do not appear to be the main cause of concern.

“A new set of packages is being prepared at the moment,” says LSH associate David Parker.

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