Architects Kingston upon Thames

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Following the meandering curve of the Thames and the shady groove of the Hogsmill River, Kingston abounds with nature. You’re never far from green, whether Richmond Park, Wimbledon and Epsom Commons or Surbiton Golf Club. And though it once sat within Surrey, Kingston folk generally consider themselves Londoners and operate within the capital.

Our contemporary brand of residential architecture is well suited to the 19th- and 20th-century residential architecture of the borough. Our home expansions and renovations deliver efficient, light-bathed layouts that respect the local vernacular and address the way we live today. Scenario Architecture puts the client at the heart of every project. That’s why every one of our houses has a unique look and feel, no matter the provenance.

We launched Scenario in 2007 with an ambition to add modern efficiency and contemporary style to London’s period architecture. We bring our clients into the process, incorporating their needs and objectives into the overall design. A tailor-made Scenario home reflects the lifestyle of the homeowner.

Our landmark Scenario House illustrates our commitment to blending old and new. A fresh, customised take on a typical East London home, it was shortlisted for a 2018 RIBA London Award.

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Architects Kingston upon Thames Your Kingston upon Thames Project

Starting your Kingston upon Thames project

Read our illustrated synopsis before retaining an architect, whether you are extending your house, renovating or building anew. Most projects in Kingston require building approval from the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames. We have a solid track record securing planning permission for our clients and can help you undertake a planning application in Kingston.

Tip

Has your architect been successful in steering planning applications through the local council? Find out by visiting the Kingston Council website and entering your architect’s name in the planning archives.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Advice

Our electronic guide will help you navigate the planning process in Kingston and beyond. Click below to download the eBook.
Planning guide

Architects Kingston upon Thames Your Kingston upon Thames Project >> Scenario Architecture

Working with Scenario Architecture on your Kingston upon Thames project

We are a RIBA Chartered Practice. As such, our boutique studio is made up of experienced, highly skilled architects who comply with the health and safety criteria of the Royal Institute of British Architects. We specialise in domestic architecture across London and beyond.

We encourage all our clients to collaborate with us during the drawing, design and planning stages. If you are looking for an architect in Kingston upon Thames, visit our online portfolio to see how we could work together.

We are constantly upgrading our expertise with 3D design technology. We use virtual reality and real-time visualisations in all our projects for choosing the right fixtures and fittings and simulating natural light. This Chartered Institute of Building case study demonstrates the benefits of innovative 3D technology in residential architecture.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Wrap-around extension and full renovation

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Extensive renovation within a conservation area

Architects Kingston upon Thames

Full refurbishment of a terraced house

Architects Kingston upon Thames >> Your Kingston upon Thames Project Further Reading

Until Kingston built its wooden link across the Thames in the early 13th century, there was no other bridge but London Bridge spanning the river. That’s how old and distinguished the borough is, and how important it was to the rest of the city. Another medieval bridge called the Clattern, spanning the Hogsmill River just east of the riverside walk, still exists today in its earliest form, among some of the oldest buildings in the borough. The Lovekyn Chapel, on the edge of the old village, is only slightly older – and the only private chantry chapel to have survived the Reformation.

But Kingston’s most significant development began in the 1800s. And that’s what most people recognise today: the old brown-brick shop fronts and bay-windowed pubs in the village centre, the stout Victorian centre-plan homes, the riverfront gazebos and the leafy Kingston cemetery with its Gothic chapels. After that, Kingston sprawled to the north, east and south, developing suburbs like Surbiton, Chessington and New Malden. Each of these growing areas responded to the exploding population with roomy postwar homes, many with lovely mock Tudor and Victorian details. But Kingston isn’t dominated by a suburban atmosphere. The university, with campuses as far-reaching as Richmond Park, brings in scads of students.

Life isn’t as quiet here as it may seem. On weekends, everyone takes advantage of the easy access to water and green, treading the riverside paths, but they also hit the traditional pubs dotted through the borough. You can have a raucous night out at one of your local cocktail bars, or head into London on the South Western Railway.

With more contemporary housing stock dominating the residential landscape of Kingston upon Thames, you can often find a house that won’t require a long and complicated permissions process to adapt. Moreover, there’s an overriding sense of space: wide houses, wide streets and vistas that go miles across green parks and over the Thames. So adding extra space won’t be as important as bringing in modern comforts and quality materials that make the house your own.

Architects in and around Kingston have done much lately to make the borough an attractive prospect for students looking to stay long-term. The council is open to home refurbishment and other improvements; many innovative designs pass council approval. A good architect can take an average terrace house or semi in Kingston upon Thames and bring it into the 21st century with massive curb appeal.

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Architects Kingston upon Thames In our clients words

scenario-architecture-testimonial-michael

Great ideas and vision to help with our substantial improvement of a Victorian terrace. In our experience Scenario’s method prioritises the final result. That may mean more professional fees or higher quotes from contractors, as they understand the exact requirements.


scenario-architecture-testimonial-guy

Great, professional service. Good drawings and models and ultimately passed planning at the first attempt with Hackney Council. Would certainly recommend!


scenario-architecture-testimonial-kauser

Scenario Architecture have created an outstanding design and space that was beyond my expectations. The design was through their unique process of understanding the client’s daily scenarios and collaborating with the client to come up with a unique design. The design process is one of the most memorable parts of the process and they also stretched my existing ideas to help create this unique space. A stress free journey throughout the whole process which Scenario were indispensable by giving advice on many difficult design and build decisions.


scenario-architecture-testimonial-brendan

We wanted to renovate our house in a conservation area in central London. Given this involved a complete demolition and new build with an extra floor on top, getting planning approval was always going to be tricky. Scenario did an amazing job on the new house ‘envelope’ and throughout the planning phase. We couldn’t have wished for better from them and having succeeded in gaining planning approval owe them a very big ‘thank you’.


scenario-architecture-testimonial-michael-gauer

Scenario were great at thinking imaginatively and coming up with a design for a ground floor extension that was more ambitous than other architects we spoke to. They also helped us find a contractor who was able to complete the project working within timescale and our tight budget. I would recommend for mid to large sized projects with sufficient budget to allow for full utilisation of their creativity.

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FAQ

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWhat is unique about the Scenario design process?
The scenario design process was developed, tested and perfected through over a decade of extensive delivery of residential projects within and around London, some of its key features are listed below:   
  • Scenario based design – We start each and every project with a meticulous analysis of our client’s vision, requirements and aspirations. We do this by asking our clients to imagine their everyday scenarios living in the completed house and describe their desired interaction with it. 
We then translate the resulting high definition brief into an informative and revealing 3-dimensional simulation, illuminating aspirations, requirements and patterns of habitation. 
  • Uniquely interactive - Our client’s deep involvement in the process does not stop with completion of the brief. Our design meetings are highly interactive, informal and fun. 
Sitting together in front of a real time 3D model of the proposed design with realistic materials, lighting and textures we push and pull the proposed scheme together to explore its full potential and drag and drop different materials to explore various options. hen we invite our clients to take a virtual reality tour through advanced equipment that is always available in our practice for our clients to explore their projects at different stages of development. 
  • Designed to reflect you – Based purely on your lifestyle, aspirations and requirements and free from externally imposed concepts, metaphors and pre-conceptions, a completely fresh and unique design will gradually emerge and it will tell your story not ours. 
It will not look like an image cut out of a trendy architecture magazine and not designed to intentionally impress anyone. It will feel familiar, warm and inviting and you will recognise yourself in it because it will be a genuine expression of the unique way in which you and your family wish to interact with it and enjoy it for many years to come.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWhat is Scenario’s approach to planning?
Planning in the U.K in general and in Greater London in particular is admittedly a tricky business. It is a complex maze of policies, standards and regulations that requires specialised and up to date knowledge and skills to navigate successfully.  Over the years we developed a strong approach and an effective methodology, allowing us to maintain an outstanding track record stretching over more than a decade. Successfully securing planning permission for our clients across Greater London and the Home Counties.  The key aspects of our approach to planning are listed below: 
  • Collaborative – We start the conversation with planners early and advise most of our clients to seek pre-planning advice prior to submission of a full planning application. Our experience shows that when properly consulted and liaised with, most planning case officers will be receptive to conduct a professional dialogue, increasing chances of successes. 
  • Strategic – We tailor a custom planning strategy for each project based on its circumstances such as planning history, local context and specific challenging elements. We sometimes split applications or introduce minor tweaks to the scheme during the consideration period in conversation with the officers to prevent one contentious element from jeopardising approval of the main scheme.
  • Professional – Our experience shows that the quality and clarity of the submission in terms of background research, planning history of the property and context, precedent and of course the arguments presented to support the case has a tremendous effect on success rate. 

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWhat is Scenario’s approach to sustainability?
In the past, it was common practice for local authorities to impose sustainability standards on residential developments. However, the 2015 Deregulation Act removed the obligation on local authorities to require any standard at all, which means the only requirements having fallen back to those of the Building Regulations.  With no clear and improved targets to work towards, in collaboration with Envision (www.envisioneco.com), we have created optional Sustainability ‘Levels’ to offer our clients the chance to drastically improve the sustainability credentials of their home. These ‘Levels’ encompassing Bronze, Silver, Gold and Diamond, traverse a clear and applicable route from basic compliance with current Building Regulations all the way to the full and rigorous HQM (Home Quality Mark) certification within Level Diamond. As the packages become more elaborate in terms of sustainability, analysis and implemented measures, they provide increasing tangible benefits. Ranging from thermal and acoustic comfort and wellbeing, to reduced carbon foot print, savings on running costs and significant advantages through the planning process.  The more elaborate packages obviously entail higher cost in terms of professional fees as well as impact on the construction cost, although each sustainability ‘Level’ will endeavour to not overly burden the construction budget.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWho will be assigned to work on my project?
Any architectural project comprises three main aspects, Creative design, Technical design and Project Management. A successful architectural project can only be achieved when all three aspects are properly performed and harmoniously integrated by an experienced professional. But can we really except a single person to specialise and shine in all three aspects and furthermore skilfully negotiate and balance the often contradictory challenges these aspects present? The basic assumption underlying the common structure of almost all other architectural practices today is that it is possible and this is precisely what is expected from the lone and often junior Architect that would typically be assigned to run your project start to finish. Scenario works in a completely different and new way, we believe in specialism and teamwork and therefore assign three experienced specialists for each and every project. A project team in Scenario is composed of a Project Director, a Designer and a Technical Designer, seamlessly collaborating to deliver results, which are noticeably superior to anything that a single person, skilful as they may be, could ever produce.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWhat is the cost of building a new house?
If you are thinking about building a new house from scratch for which the term Self Build is often used, we currently recommend allowing between £2,500 and £3,500 per square metre for projects in and around London. This may sound like a very wide range initially, perhaps too wide to be useful? As soon as we can establish even a few of the basics of your requirements and aspirations for the project we can safely narrow it down and customise it to match your intentions. The key parameters that will help us to refine initial estimates are whether or not a basement is required to achieve your target floor area, the likely construction method and corresponding structural approach and of course your desired level of fixtures, fittings and material finishes. Another key parameter that we must consider right from the outset is the level of sustainability that we are aiming at, are you satisfied with the base line requirements as defined by current building regulations, or should we aim higher? Working together with sustainability experts we have created our own bespoke set of sustainability packages which allows you to place your sustainability target anywhere you wish. This can range from basic compliance to an extremely sustainable and energy efficient standard which comes with great savings on running costs, future proofing and wellbeing benefits such as improved air quality, thermal comfort, and considerate and healthier surface finishes.

Architects Kingston upon Thames

FAQWhat is the fee structure used by Scenario Architecture?
The fee structure that we will offer will depend on the type and scale of your project as well as the scope required from us. The vast majority of the projects we take on are what we call ‘full projects’, these are projects for which we will provide full Architectural services from inception to completion, covering the standard scope of services offered by most RIBA Chartered Architects and more. For these full projects our fees will be calculated on the basis of an agreed percentage of the final cost of the building works exclusive of VAT and professional fees. At any given time, we will calculate our fees based on the latest construction cost estimates available until the final cost of the building works has been ascertained. Our fees will be adjusted both forward and retrospectively to reflect any increase in budget and scope of the project, and forward only (due to work already completed) to reflect any decrease in budget/scope. During early stages, our fees will be calculated based on our in-house estimation tool and once available, on estimates by the appointed Quantity Surveyor, followed by actual prices of returned tenders and finally, the contract sum reflecting any changes during construction. Under unusual circumstances we may agree to take on projects only up to a certain stage, for example up to planning, and sometimes from a certain stage if we are taking over from another Architect. For these ‘partial scope projects’ we will normally put forward a simple fixed lump sum proposal.