Woking Town Centre Redevelopment
Benoy is an award-winning firm of architects, masterplanners, interior and graphic designers, with studios in the UK, Middle East, India, China and Asia. Founded in the UK in 1947, Benoy is recognised as a global player and a leading creative force.
Architecture, design and planning
Benoy’s client, Moyallen Ltd, are working as development advisors for Woking Borough Council. The Moyallen team has been tasked with a complete review of Woking’s town centre, including reconfigurations and extensions to the two existing shopping centres, and creation of a new, adjacent £150m retail-led, mixed-use development. Benoy turned to Blink Image to source the images for every stage of the redevelopment, from planning to Verified Views, to marketing.
Trusted to deliver outstanding images
Benoy has been working with Blink Image since 2008. When the Victoria Square Woking project began in 2012, Divisional Director, Stephen Gill immediately turned to Blink Image for support. Having already worked with them for so many years, he knew they were a company he could trust to deliver outstanding images for this critical project. According to Stephen: “Blink Image listen and interpret exactly what we need. Sometimes they need to use their imagination which they do very well – they always come up with the goods.”
15 projects, 30 CGIs and a £150m scheme
Woking Borough Council are determined to significantly improve the look and feel of the town centre. This extensive scheme includes:
Reconfiguration and extension of the two existing shopping centres
Refurbishment of existing shops and restaurants
Creation of a brand new £150m retail-led, mixed-use development, including two new residential towers, a 200 bedroom hotel and conference facilities, new car parking and new public realm works
So far, these works have comprised 15 separate projects. Blink Image were involved in each of these, creating at least 30 CGIs in total. The phases supported by Blink Image include:
As part of the Woking Borough Council planning process, Blink Image produced Verified Views to convey the scheme’s visual impact within the town. They also produced Verified Views from a number of locations up to ten miles away in the surrounding countryside (some areas are sensitive and classified as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty).
It was important for residents and council officials to see how the scheme, in particular, the two tall residential towers, would appear from a distance, as well as within just 100 feet of the site. As part of the public consultation process for planning, the Verified View CGIs were displayed on boards in the town centre where residents could view them and give their feedback. “Not all CGI companies can provide Verified Views,” says Stephen, “so this is another reason why working with Blink Image is so beneficial.”
In addition, Blink Image also created CGIs to communicate the scheme’s architectural character and the transformation it would bring to the centre of Woking. The council listened to feedback from the public and as a result, the designs were altered slightly over time. Blink Image were flexible and supplied a number of design amends. “We usually get excellent value for money from Blink Image,” says Stephen.
Publicity and marketing
Benoy’s client has been using the CGIs produced by Blink Image for marketing purposes, including print media, online, local TV and press releases. This is to promote the scheme to prospective tenants and landlords, and to attract investors. These images show the look and visibility of the retail units and residential towers within the overall setting.
Why Blink Image?
“It is important that the images we use are accurate,” says Stephen. “Every element of the scheme has to be 100% correct. That’s why we use Blink Image for CGIs. They produce excellent images on time, and any last minute changes are all accommodated. They offer good results and they’re an amenable team.” Benoy will continue to work with Blink Image in the future because they:
Are reliable and trustworthy
Provide exactly what’s needed in keeping with short timescales
Take any comments on board and act upon them quickly
Provide a vision without needing extensive detail
Offer Verified Views
Will travel to site whenever necessary