How redeveloped Westgate will transform Oxpens area

An artist’s impression of the new Wesgate Centre, looking along Thames Street from Oxpens with the Castle Mill Stream in the foreground

An artist’s impression of the new Wesgate Centre, looking along Thames Street from Oxpens with the Castle Mill Stream in the foreground

First published in News
Last updated
thisisoxfordshire: Photograph of the Author by , Council Reporter, also covering Oxford city centre. Call me on 01865 425429

THIS is the striking vision of Oxford’s new Westgate Centre.

And from todaypeople can have their say on what the developer behind the £400m scheme has in store.

Gone will be the centre’s existing Bonn Square facade to be replaced by a curved entrance topped by a glazed lantern.

thisisoxfordshire:

How the shopping centre will look inside

Sara Fuge, development manager at the Westgate Alliance, said: “We are really pleased. We have got fantastic architectural firms and the best people in them working on good quality designs.

“The next step will be them taking on board what we hear during the consultation and reflecting that in the designs where they can.

“It is an important next phase for us and we can make some really good progress. All our architects have done a lot of research into the buildings around Oxford and they have taken a lot of cues from that.”

The facade will be redesigned with a thick wall of rubble stonework and a small brick tower topped with a glazed lantern.

Each of the different buildings in the development will be tied together with a series of bridges and the developers say a number of architectural features – such as the design of the roofs – have been inspired by Oxford buildings and colleges.

thisisoxfordshire:

The proposed new facade facing Bonn Square

Five architectural firms are working on the scheme including Panter Hudspith, which worked on the redevelopment of Oxford Castle, and Dixon Jones which designed the Said Business School.

Landscape architects Gillespies is working on the public features of the shopping centre, including the pavements.

A public consultation on the scheme starts today at 10am and is being held in the Westgate Centre itself.

The consultation will continue until Wednesday, April 30.

Developers Crown Estate and Land Securities – which have formed the Westgate Alliance – were given outline planning permission for the redevelopment in March which sets out the principal elements of the scheme.

Over the summer they hope to submit a final planning application which will set out the details of their proposals – with construction work to start early next year.

Shopper Anna Platt, 42, from Headington, said: “The centre could do with updating.

“The existing building is not particularly attractive and the spaces are not used very well to my mind.”

Once completed, the shopping centre will have a new underground car park with 1,100 places, a John Lewis department shop, a cinema and 72,000 square metres of new retail space.

YOU SAY

thisisoxfordshire:

"The centre definitely needs to be redeveloped. It has been overdue for a long time. It is very faded and not attracting the right shops" Mike Simm, 64, East Oxford

thisisoxfordshire:

"The centre is too small for the amount of people that use it and it is a bit run down. I don’t like the current building and I think it is a bit drab." Steve McGrath, 58, East Oxford

thisisoxfordshire:

"It is quite an old building and to be honest they need some more shops inside. They should have done it a long time ago." Ilona Soumare, 31, Headington

Comments (9)

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12:21pm Fri 25 Apr 14

King Joke says...

WHOOOPS!!

They appear to have closed and paved over Castle St... the same Castle St which will cater for at least 100 buses per hour.
WHOOOPS!! They appear to have closed and paved over Castle St... the same Castle St which will cater for at least 100 buses per hour. King Joke
  • Score: 3

5:10pm Fri 25 Apr 14

xenarthra says...

A "glazed lantern"? It look more like a full-size lighthouse to me. The port-hole window only serves to reinforce the nautical look. Which Oxford college inspired these particular bizarre design features?
A "glazed lantern"? It look more like a full-size lighthouse to me. The port-hole window only serves to reinforce the nautical look. Which Oxford college inspired these particular bizarre design features? xenarthra
  • Score: 1

7:51pm Fri 25 Apr 14

Isawyoucoming says...

That facade looks like bullingdon prisons walls.
That facade looks like bullingdon prisons walls. Isawyoucoming
  • Score: 2

8:25pm Fri 25 Apr 14

remberingthe80s says...

Funny thing is that the people who are making plans for oxford. Don't live here never. Lived here.
Also the council who makes the planing approval don't even come from Oxford. It will be a mess like port meadow, funny. Thing would be that college run council will get what it wants with or without. Your views
Funny thing is that the people who are making plans for oxford. Don't live here never. Lived here. Also the council who makes the planing approval don't even come from Oxford. It will be a mess like port meadow, funny. Thing would be that college run council will get what it wants with or without. Your views remberingthe80s
  • Score: 1

8:27pm Fri 25 Apr 14

remberingthe80s says...

I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too
I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too remberingthe80s
  • Score: 1

10:30pm Fri 25 Apr 14

King Joke says...

remberingthe80s wrote:
I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too
What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it.
[quote][p][bold]remberingthe80s[/bold] wrote: I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too[/p][/quote]What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it. King Joke
  • Score: 0

7:48pm Sat 26 Apr 14

IS says...

Cyclist on the wrong side of the road in the picture..... no change there then!
Cyclist on the wrong side of the road in the picture..... no change there then! IS
  • Score: 0

8:39pm Sat 26 Apr 14

remberingthe80s says...

King Joke wrote:
remberingthe80s wrote:
I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too
What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it.
That's why the people who were born in Oxford. Can afford to live in the town. What make oxford great and a nice town to live in, not now a total mess madeby ooutsider's
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]remberingthe80s[/bold] wrote: I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too[/p][/quote]What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it.[/p][/quote]That's why the people who were born in Oxford. Can afford to live in the town. What make oxford great and a nice town to live in, not now a total mess madeby ooutsider's remberingthe80s
  • Score: 1

9:08pm Sat 26 Apr 14

King Joke says...

remberingthe80s wrote:
King Joke wrote:
remberingthe80s wrote:
I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too
What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it.
That's why the people who were born in Oxford. Can afford to live in the town. What make oxford great and a nice town to live in, not now a total mess madeby ooutsider's
You sir are a cretin and a bigot. I am not going 'back where I came from' just because you don't like 'outsiders'. Have you got any idea how insulting that is?

I can barely afford to live here either, but I have made financial sacrifices to do so because I like it here. It's no different for Oxford-born people, they have the choice to live here, or not.

I am however very interested in your theory about how Oxford is 'a total mess madeby (sic) ooutsiders (sic)'. Please list the nice things that Oxford people built or organised, and the nasty things that 'outsiders' did. I'm all ears. Incidentally where is your cut-off? Are people from outside the city but within the County allowed? Is there a mileage limit within which you're not considered an 'outsider'?
[quote][p][bold]remberingthe80s[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]remberingthe80s[/bold] wrote: I bet the people who are questioned were never born in Oxford. Too[/p][/quote]What's that got to do with it? It isn't the 18th Century, people move around and migrate. It makes life more interesting Get over it.[/p][/quote]That's why the people who were born in Oxford. Can afford to live in the town. What make oxford great and a nice town to live in, not now a total mess madeby ooutsider's[/p][/quote]You sir are a cretin and a bigot. I am not going 'back where I came from' just because you don't like 'outsiders'. Have you got any idea how insulting that is? I can barely afford to live here either, but I have made financial sacrifices to do so because I like it here. It's no different for Oxford-born people, they have the choice to live here, or not. I am however very interested in your theory about how Oxford is 'a total mess madeby (sic) ooutsiders (sic)'. Please list the nice things that Oxford people built or organised, and the nasty things that 'outsiders' did. I'm all ears. Incidentally where is your cut-off? Are people from outside the city but within the County allowed? Is there a mileage limit within which you're not considered an 'outsider'? King Joke
  • Score: 0

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