Slowly but surely, the new route is being pieced together – opening up new pathways for pedestrians, creating exciting new destinations (such as Old Union Yard Arches and Flat Iron Square) and breathing new life into the railway’s arches.
There are a number of Low Line projects here in Elephant and Castle. Some are already complete and others are in the pipeline. So check out the Regeneration Map or get the lowdown on the Low Line below…
1) Borough Triangle
Borough Triangle is a 2.5 acre site, due to be developed by Peabody housing association. Located on a triangular plot of land (bounded by Borough Road, Newington Causeway and the railway line) it’s currently home to the popular (albeit temporary) food and drinks venue, Mercato Metropolitano. Peabody plans to build up to 700 homes on the site (including at least 35 per cent affordable). The scheme also includes a large, new public space, Arch Plaza, opens-up a passage along this section of the Low Line and restores a lost street, Amelia Row.
2) The Kite
A new pedestrian route along the Low Line (linking Newington Causeway with Tiverton Street and the Rockingham estate) will be created as part of this Neobrand development. Currently under construction, this 25 storey tower on Newington Causeway includes a new hotel as well as 48 new homes, 16 of which will be affordable apartments.
3) Maldonado Walk
Maldonado Walk is a small street running alongside the railway from the Strata to Hampton Street. Originally known as Eagle Yard, in 2018 it was renamed in honour of Pedro Vicente Maldonado, the eminent Ecuadorian scientist who died in London in 1748. The street’s arches are home to a number of Latin American businesses, such as La Barra restaurant, and its new name gives recognition to the huge contribution that the Latin American community has made to this part of London.
4) Spare Street
Spare Street is a new street created from a row of disused railway arches. Named after local artist, Austin Osman Spare, this stretch of the Low Line is home to not-for-profit arts and enterprise company, Hotel Elephant. The company packs a lot into its five arches, including hot-desks and coworking; events and meeting space; a gallery and the Sidecar Coffee Bar. At just 17 years old, Spare had his work accepted for the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. So it’s fitting that Spare Street is all about nurturing and encouraging young, creative talent.
5) Elephant Road & Castle Square
Elephant Road incorporates a number of railway arch businesses, including Corsica Studios. Since 2017, this busy stretch of the Low Line has opened onto the new Castle Square (part of the town centre development). Beyond that, lies the green expanse of Elephant Park. Castle Square is set to house many of the traders from the shopping centre while the site is redeveloped and (ahead of the expected increase in footfall) a new pedestrian crossing is being built across New Kent Road to help people reach Elephant Road safely from Rockingham Street.
6) Walk Elephant – Marlborough Close
Walk Elephant is a community initiative to pool ideas for better walking routes and find ways to make them happen. One idea, that’s already borne fruit, is a new pathway along the Low Line that opens up a passage from Amelia Street through to Marlborough Close and the Newington estate. Conceived by the Walworth Society, this modest intervention (which removed a fence and created a small path) is a good example of how a small change can make a big difference.
7) Angel Lane (Manor Place)
A former council waste depot and Manor Place public baths have been redeveloped by Notting Hill Housing to create 270 new homes. As part of the development, the housing association and their partners, Durkan, have created a new street along the railway line named Angel Lane. It connects Manor Place to Penrose Street. The scheme, which also preserves the historic facade of the old bath house, is almost complete and tenants are moving into their new homes later this year (2019). Durkan is also working with the council to convert nearby Manor Place terrace into 56 new homes.
8) Jewell Street
At the southernmost end of the Elephant and Castle stretch of the Low Line, 17 railway arches have recently been refurbished and brought back into use for light industrial purposes. In the process, a new street, Jewell Street, has been created. It runs parallel to Crown Street and opens up a new route through to Wyndham Road.