CHALLENGE. Marylebone Cricket Club (known as MCC) is the world’s most active cricket club and Lord’s is the game’s most cherished ground. Now more than 200 years old, the famous ground has grown up with a collection of buildings surrounding the playing area, more akin to a campus than a stadium. Populous were appointed to create a masterplan that will allow the club to redevelop parts of the Ground as part of a phased plan, realising the potential of the central London site, whilst retaining the unique ambience and character of this special place.
INNOVATION. The Masterplan, unveiled in 2013, lays down key priorities and principles for the development of the Ground including:
• providing the very best facilities for players and officials,
• retaining and enhancing the best historic features, while creating more appropriate settings for the listed buildings and structures,
• increasing the seating capacity to 32,000; redeveloping five stands, each with individual architectural identities,
• retaining the size of the playing areas, both the main ground and Nursery ground,
• applying best practice of inclusive design and accessibility transforming the perimeter of the estate introducing more visual permeability,
• improving the gardens, landscape and public realm,
• consolidating MCC administrative offices,
• embedding economic and environmental sustainability throughout,
• improving the visitor experience.
The Ground exists in a sophisticated planning environment, within a conversation area, in a central London borough with both the listed Pavilion and Grace Gates on site. Naturally a project of this complexity has gone through several rounds of intense consultation with numerous stakeholders, to arrive at a deliverable and supportable masterplan.
IMPACT. The first project, the redevelopment of the Warner Stand, is currently under construction with completion due in time for the 2017 season. The second project, the South Western Project which includes the redevelopment of the Tavern & Allen Stands, two other buildings and the partial refurbishment of the Pavilion, has been submitted for planning consent.
The process to transform the Ground is already underway, with stated aims to secure the position of Lord’s as the finest ground in the world.