BedZED, Sutton

The Beddington Zero Energy Development is a mixed-use urban village built on a disused part of Beddington sewage works in north Hackbridge

BedZED - Helios Road

Built in 2002 on a 3½-acre site focused on Helios Road, BedZED was a collab­o­ra­tive project between the Peabody Trust and the London Borough of Sutton. Its cutting edge archi­tec­ture inte­grated envi­ron­mental, social and economic needs and employed various methods of reducing energy, water and car use. The devel­op­ment incor­po­rates 82 homes and several small busi­nesses (most of which are ecolog­i­cally inclined), with asso­ci­ated on-site amenities.

Half the homes were sold on the open market, a quarter were reserved for social rent by Peabody and the remaining quarter for shared ownership.

A community facility called BedZED Pavilion is used for dance and exercise classes and family activ­i­ties. Some of the neigh­bouring land was preserved as recre­ational space but other parts were later built up with less imag­i­na­tively designed housing.

The Biore­gional Devel­op­ment Group played a leading role in initi­ating the BedZED project and opti­mising the devel­op­ment’s sustain­ability. The group is head­quar­tered in BedZED and has built on its expe­ri­ence here in subse­quent projects around the world. Archi­tects ZEDFac­tory are also based here.

Like most utopian schemes, BedZED has its flaws and some residents have mixed feelings about having moved here, but its creators’ inten­tions were admirable and further schemes of this nature would greatly enhance London’s social housing stock.

Postcode area: Wallington SM6
Further information: Bioregional’s page on BedZED