A design for a distribution park in Milton Keynes emphasizes its position on the margin. Neither totally gridded nor organically grown, the city has a reputation as a thoroughfare, lying on the periphery of London’s Green Belt, in-between the Oxford-Cambridge Arc, and as a corner of the UK’s ‘Golden Logistics Triangle’. Here, people, vehicles and goods flow regularly through the city, whose urban fabric swerves around existing ecological features, also importantly facilitating wildlife corridors.
A proposed model for urbanism builds upon the city’s new town plan and bridges the utilitarian and industrial with the wild and earthen. The demand for distribution parks in Milton Keynes is met with a scheme that produces porous and accessible edges for the city, using metal components to contain earth quarried from the clay-rich site and form enclosures. A new development is built around extensions to the city’s cycle infrastructure, which provides a unique opportunity for Milton Keynes to become a centre of leisure cycling and to support a local logistics trade served by cargo bikes. Distribution parks become green, peopled and community-owned spaces that operate locally and nationally, which welcome hybridity and fluidity as essential to the contemporary experience of the English landscape.