We recognise that different projects and clients require different levels of service which is why we have developed two methods of delivering architectural services. We would be very happy to discuss the different options available and help you choose which is right for your particular project.


With this method of service we will be with you throughout the process from initial concept design stage through to the completion of your project build. We will act as the main co-ordinator of your project ensuring everything runs smoothly and any issues or problems are navigated and brought to a satisfactory conclusion.

As part of a fully managed service we will typically prepare your designs, deal with your local authority to get the necessary consents, prepare a schedule of works to allow accurate comparisons of quotes from builders, prepare the detailed contract drawings that explain to a builder exactly how to build it. 


For those clients who would like the input of an architect but would like the flexibility to choose the level of input our modular service can be a way to achieve this. Our modular solution breaks down the stages into initial concept design, statutory consents and build stage costing documents enabling clients to choose the service that meets their project requirements and budget. We can and will be there as and when you may require us. 

Typically a project is broken down into the following keys stages: 


The architectural existing measured survey


The feasibility sketch design


The planning application


Tender and Party wall agreements


Contract administration and site inspections

The architectural existing measured survey

Our thorough needs analysis process aims to get a detailed understanding of your requirements as well as a detailed understanding of the site and property. This forms the basis of the brief from which the initial concepts are developed.

The feasibility sketch design 

At Urbane Design London Basements we believe that unlike the traditional approach to architecture, this important design stage should be carried out as an interactive session. Your input into the design is encouraged so that you fully understand the process and can make informed choices.

For homeowners looking to carry out basement conversions we provide several different options and sit down with you in your home to discuss the options, giving you the chance to input into the process and often combine elements of the different options to create a design that completely meets your requirements.

The Planning Application

As part of the design process we will establish whether you need planning permission or for homeowner projects, if your work can be done under permitted development. Urbane Design London Basements has a great deal of experience submitting planning applications and has and extremely strong history of successful outcomes with Local Authorities.

Obtaining planning permission can be one of the main challenges when embarking on a basement project and needs to be given serious consideration from the beginning. We will take care of planning application submissions and subsequent dealings with the planning officer and make any necessary adjustments to reach a satisfactory conclusion.

Tender and Party Wall Agreements

The Party Wall Agreements Act 1996 is legislation which almost always applies to new basement constructions.  It is very important that careful consideration is given in this aspect of the project since it is the framework within which we interact formally with your neighbours.  Among other things it:

  • Ensures that appropriate thought has been given to the way your basement construction impacts on your neighbours.
  • Provides a framework within which to have detailed constructive conversations with your neighbours about your proposals.
  • Provides a mechanism to progress matters in situations where neighbours believe that their non-action will halt or delay your works.
  • Acts a form of insurance policy to protect you from unfounded claims of damage to neighbouring properties.

Contract Administration & Site Inspection

The key stage of any project is the build phase when your plans are turned into reality. Whether you choose to use us for a fully managed service or whether you have opted for a modular service we will be available to ensure you project is delivered to the highest standards.

If you have opted for the fully managed service we will act as the project co-ordinator and contract administrator ensuring excellent contractors are appointed, suitable building contracts are put in place covering you and your chosen builder for such things as insurances, completion dates, retention sums, payment details and building work is being carried out to the highest standards. We carry out regular site visits to ensure any potential problems are dealt with quickly and architects instructions issued to the builders when required. We approve how much they will be paid at key stages of the build, and check they are following the contract drawings and documents.

If you have opted for the modular service you can choose to select the necessary level that you feel you need. All services will be available on a pay-as-you-go basis. Prior to every stage of work we carry out we will quote how many hours we think a project is going to take and ask for your authority to progress before starting each stage. Typically any project can be broken down into five key stages.

Structural Consideration

The structural consideration of a basement is paramount for the construction. Not only ensuring the safety and structural integrity of the property and adjoining neighbour. 

The first step before the construction can begin is to collect geological data by using a specialised company to dig bore holes and assess the ground formation, water table level and ground bearing capacity of the soil amongst other properties.

Having that in hand the structural engineering team can then start designing the basement safeguarding any structure above and adjoining neighbours. 

The work consists of planning and excavation in a manner to avoid any ground movement ensuring the safety of the workers and the building itself. The building is monitored throughout the construction in order to ensure a tolerable movement.

The permanent structure is built of reinforced concrete, where the walls transfer the vertical load down to the required level as well as retaining the ground on the side and working as a water barrier.

Please contact us to book a free initial meeting at your home with one of our RIBA registered architects. We will discuss your requirements, how we work and how we would go about your project. We will form a design brief with you to determine what level of service you require from us.

Call to discuss your London Basement today on 020 8996 0601

Urbane Design London Basements

Specialists in London basement conversions, London basement design and basement excavation.

020 8 996 0601
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