Poplar Riverside, Tower Hamlets 
Regeneration Case Study

  • over 2,800 homes
  • 90,000 sq ft of new commercial and community space
  • target 55% biodiversity net gain
  • a significant amount of green space, with a 2.5-acre riverside park

This isolated brownfield site is being transformed into a mixed-use neighbourhood with new community amenities including a grocery store, crèche, food and beverage, a mix of public open space and natural habitats, designed in partnership with the London Wildlife Trust.

The regeneration will reopen the banks of the River Lea to the community, with a 500m riverside walkway, park, meadow and play space to enjoy.

Long Term Brownfield Regeneration

An aerial shot of Poplar Gasworks

Before: 20-acre former gasworks

A exterior CGI of Poplar Riverside

CGI of Poplar Riverside public space

A exterior CGI of Poplar Riverside

CGI of 2.5-acre riverside park

An aerial shot of Poplar Gasworks

Unlocking a Derelict Gasworks

Key Challenges

  • Complex site remediation, requiring significant investment 
  • Sensitive riverside environment 
  • New pedestrian bridge landings safeguarded
  • Site located on a high voltage cable route
A exterior CGI of Poplar Riverside

New Green Spaces

  • A significant amount of dedicated green space, designed in partnership with London Wildlife Trust. Nature has been considered from the earliest stage, with dedicated habitat created on the construction site.
  • More than 200 new trees and 6,000 sq ft of new planting
  • Wetland habitats, grassland and a riverside meadow
  • 2.5-acre riverside public park with a dedicated children’s play space
  • Bat and bird boxes, log pile and insect hotels
  • Targeting 55% biodiversity net gain
  • 4-acres of meanwhile habitat across the construction site
Brownfield regeneration project

Sustainable Design

Innovative features and methods of construction have been incorporated, to reduce the impact of the homes.

  • Offsite manufacture utilised where possible
  • Landscape design adapted to reduce embodied carbon 
  • Efficient building fabric, including triple glazed window system
  • Electric charging infrastructure 
  • Cycle parking
Brownfield regeneration project

Local Jobs and Skills for the Community

Achievements to date:

  • More than 360 people from Tower Hamlets employed on site
  • 8 local apprenticeships created
  • More than 10 STEM and work experience events held
Planning Awards Winner Logo 2020

Planning Awards 2020 

Poplar Riverside won Planning Permission of the Year in 2020 with the judges praising it as "a development that truly reflects its location and provides betterment to the environment" and shows "great signs of community engagement and co-working with the local authority".

Site Plan

St William, Poplar Riverside

Sustainable Travel Options 

East India DLR Station

0.6 miles

Iconised image of a bicycle

8 mins

Iconised image of a person walking

12 mins

Iconised image of a bus

40 mins

Canning Town Underground Station

0.9 miles

Iconised image of a bicycle

6 mins

Iconised image of a person walking

10 mins


1 miles

Iconised image of a person walking

22 mins

London City Airport

2.5 miles

Iconised image of a bicycle

22 mins

Iconised image of a train

31 mins

Iconised image of a bus

45 mins

Our Partners

Planning Authorities: London Borough of Tower Hamlets

Architects: JTP | EPR

Landscape & Ecology: LDA | London Wildlife Trust

Housing Association: Poplar HARCA

Other Partners: Great London Authority

An image of Poplar Riverside Partners