The project, described as ‘exciting’, ‘massive’ and ‘genuinely huge’, could see the cavernous army warehouses between Longmoor Road and Woolmer Road at Greatham either turned into state-of-the-art film studios, or demolished to make way for new ones.
The idea to create a ‘blockbuster hub’ is from innovators at Urban Place Lab (UPL), who describe themselves as ‘place creatives’.
Working with film studio consultancy Space2, the UPL team will be leading the master-planning of the mixed-use digital and film studios, with the working title of ‘Forest Studios’.
An Urban Place Lab spokesman said: “Apple Pie Depot has the opportunity to establish itself as a studio and business hub for creative and technology-focused industries, setting the standard for a comprehensive working environment, where related businesses can create an integrated supply chain within a single setting in a woodland context and offering communal, social, collaborative and recreational facilities.
“We have approached the reuse of existing and proposed structures, recommending simple portal frame buildings conceived as small communities in their own right, each with its own distinct identity, instead of the identikit sheds found across the country.
“The flexible studio spaces and building volumes will use a palette of colours drawn from the local ecology, merging the scheme with its natural setting.
“Emphasis is placed upon landscape integration and the public realm, with enhanced pedestrian connections between buildings and access to the central communal building at the heart of the park and the woodland beyond.
“The communal unit provides a focus for social activities and collaboration, as well as a place to relax with a hard-earned break from work.”
The UPL team is currently involved in the Whitehill and Bordon regeneration, overseen by East Hampshire District Council.
The council has confirmed plans for a film studio on the site, currently an army depot base, are being discussed, but wouldn’t be drawn on details.