calfordseaden was appointed to carry out pre-planning M&E Engineering and Sustainability services for the conversion of the derelict Astoria Theatre into a mixed-use development named Brighton Rox, preparing all relevant documents to accompany a planning application.

The Astoria Theatre is a derelict grade II listed building, located on the main A23 into Brighton. Situated in Gloucester Place opposite the Valley Gardens conservation area, the site enjoys a prominent location within walking distance of Brighton’s main attractions.

Proposals consisted of a planning application to change the Astoria Theatre from a Class D2/A1 use to a mixed-use development comprising 73 residential apartments with commercial units and community uses on the lower ground and ground floor. Sustainability measures put in place aim to achieve a BREEAM ‘Excellent’ rating.

The building’s M&E design consists of:

  • Site-wide heat network providing heat and hot water to all areas of the demise
  • Underfloor heating throughout
  • Sprinkler system
  • Management community area with mechanical ventilation
  • Full mechanical ventilation to the residential apartments to address issues with air quality
  • Photovoltaic array
  • Overheating mitigation measures

A key driver for the client was to ensure that the scheme could be delivered from the feasibility stage. Designs planning had to be taken to an advanced level due to the building’s heritage and proximity to neighbours and the introduction of a basement with proposals taken up to the boundary.