The site lies on Green Lanes in the London Borough of Hackney and - rather uniquely for such an urban location - backs onto a large reservoir, now designated as a conservation area. Working with Fairview New Homes, John Pardey Architects developed the design for this 0.6 HA site replacing a former office building with two parallel apartment blocks, averaging six storeys, set either side of a new public pedestrian route through to the reservoir footpath. A nine storey block clad in bronze anodised aluminium provides identity when viewed from across the reservoir. The scheme comprised 107 units of which 25 are HA. The design picks up on local terraced housing typologies, where individual houses abut each other yet retain identity through different materials, so here we use two brick colours to create vertical elements, joined together to make the blocks. The two blocks flank a predominantly hard landscaped pedestrian and cycle route, with small private front gardens to ground floor apartments and an off-centre row of mature trees. A seating area is provided close to the water’s edge. To Green Lanes and the reservoir, large inset balconies create simple, assertive statements while the central route has projecting balconies affording water views to the apartments. Set back attic storeys in zinc cladding form the roofscape. Balconies are cantilevered with a combination of glazed or part metal railings, in a dark grey finish.