2021 business review: A year of Covid recovery and growth

As part of our ongoing strategy for successfully transitioning Chapman Taylor’s business leadership to a new generation and ensuring sustainable and successful international growth in the years to come, Düsseldorf Director Ruprecht Melder was appointed to Chapman Taylor’s Group Board, joining existing Group Board Members Chris Lanksbury, Adrian Griffiths, Tim Partington, Michael Cottam, Mikel Barriola and Jon Hale.

Key growth markets over the last year were China, and Saudi Arabia. In the Middle East, there is continued demand for our industry-leading design expertise in masterplanning and mixed-use projects. We are also exploring new markets and opportunities in North and South America, and we are expanding our work across China. Meanwhile, a strong portfolio of office projects in Hyderabad has led Chapman Taylor to establish a second Indian studio there.

The COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on much of the property industry, including architectural companies. However, our Business Continuity Plan ensured a smooth transition from studio-based working to remote working for the lockdown, minimising disruption to our processes and ensuring continuity of service for our clients. All of our studios are now open again.


Castle Park View, Bristol, UK

Work in the residential sector across the UK is increasing, with major schemes in London, Bristol, and Manchester. Construction is advanced at Bristol’s tallest residential building, Castle Park View, for which we are providing architectural and interior design, while work also continues on the Kampus Build-to-Rent development and the MeadowSide residential scheme, both in Manchester. Construction is progressing on our Friary Park and Millbrook Park residential developments in North London, with the first apartments handed over at the latter.

We have designed major urban regeneration projects in Coventry city centre, the first phase of which is under construction, and Bolton town centre, which has received planning permission, while the Manchester Goods Yard office development is approaching completion at St John’s Quarter in Manchester.

Construction is now underway at the 29-storey Anchorage Gateway residential development in Manchester. We have also recently completed the delivery of the new Manchester Metropolitan University Institute of Sport and we are working alongside WSP on the design of Brent Cross West station in North London.


Büyükyalı, Istanbul, Turkey

We completed several landmark CEE projects in the office sector, including the Expo Business Park development in Bucharest, Kotelna Park in Prague, BREEAM Outstanding J8 Office Park in Bucharest, and Park Lane office development in Sofia. Other office developments in the region, such the LEED Platinum U Centre, in Bucharest, are progressing well on site, with its first phase completed.

Also in the CEE region, our masterplan for the 2029 World Horticultural Expo/Green Expo was presented in the Polish city of Łódź. Construction is advanced at the PINEA Resort in the coastal Polish city of Pobierowo and at the MOLO Lipno Resort in the southern Czech Republic.

In Turkey, the much-anticipated Büyükyalı mixed-use, residential-led project on the shoreline of the Marmara Sea in Istanbul, completed a major part of this very large development.

In Germany, building permission has been granted for the Proeslerstrasse office complex in Nuremberg and, in the same city, a residential and commercial building at Schanzäckerstrasse. Construction is underway for new residential apartments at Schuckertstrasse in Fürth, while our design for a residential complex for the new Hornschuch Campus, also in Fürth, is being further developed. In the same city, the redevelopment of the FLAIR Galerie shopping centre is now complete.

In Italy, we have designed a mixed-use, education-focused core area of the largest urban redevelopment in Milan, Aria, in the Ex Macello district.


Xiong’an, China

We are undertaking a number of very large urban masterplanning competitions in China, which have been very successful for our business. These include several linked masterplan concepts for the major new city of Xiong’an, near Beijing.

Our Liangjiang Innovation Zone masterplan development is under construction in Chongqing, creating an ecological innovation district on a 6.8km2 site, integrating universities, R&D support and significant social and leisure support facilities with the surrounding natural environment.

We are currently developing masterplan designs for Songzhuang Xiaopu Artists’ Town and the 1,380-hectare Daxing New Town, both in Beijing.

We have won a number of mixed-use architectural projects for major Chinese clients in cities across China, demonstrating how successfully our brand is developing in the country. This includes major mixed-use office projects such as the Shangdong Energy Group International Offshore Financial Centre in Haikou Jiangdong, and the 160,00m2 Zhanjiang Goake office park, which has commenced construction.

Middle East

Knowledge Economic Hub Hub, Madinah, Saudi Arabia

In Saudi Arabia, Chapman Taylor is continuing to develop the masterplan for an innovative new urban district adjacent to King Abdulaziz International Airport in the city of Jeddah. The 1.91 million m² GBA masterplan for Airport City introduces an innovative mixed-use community concept to the region.

In Madinah, the KEC Hub, a major mixed-use project not far from one of Islam’s most important mosques which has started on-site.

We have completed several prestigious international cinema developments in Saudi Arabia, including the country’s largest cinema – Muvi Mall of Dhahran, and Saudi Arabia’s first boutique cinema Muvi Tala Mall in Riyadh – as part of the ongoing rollout of the Muvi cinema brand across the Kingdom.

Central Asia

Almaty Museum of Arts, Almaty, Kazakhstan

The first phase of the prestigious K Residence development has completed in Baku, delivering five of what will be a total of seven luxury residential courtyard buildings in the scheme. Meanwhile, construction of the mixed-use, office-led Port Baku Tower 2 is advancing at pace, and our design for the new Almaty Museum of Arts in Kazakhstan is due to start construction in early 2022.

Construction is continuing at the Mirabad Avenue residential development in central Tashkent, Uzbekistan, one of a number of designs we have created for the city.

South and South-East Asia

Chengdong Elementary School, Wuxi, China

In Thailand, we are currently developing a major smart city masterplan, which will be an exemplar for how buildings and cities will need to be designed in the not-too-distant future. We have also created a masterplan for the Ao Nang Resort overlooking beautiful Krabi Bay, and design development is continuing for the PMCU national Stadium in Bangkok. We have completed more phases of the refurbishment of Bumrungrad International Hospital in Bangkok, with many other projects underway at the hotel.

In early 2021, our Bangkok studio also won a prestigious design competition to design a nature-inspired new elementary school at the Wuxi Economic Development Zone in China’s Jiangsu Province.

Construction is advancing on the Dolmen Mall shopping centre in Lahore, Pakistan, which will be a 75,000m2 GLA luxury shopping centre located within the Defence Housing Authority (DHA) grounds in the city.

Planning permission has been granted for the 25-floor Orbit Towers office development in Hyderabad, India, which will provide 102,000m² GLA of office space for IT workers, with a food court and business centre on the ground floor. We are also working on other major office parks in the same city. Meanwhile, construction is continuing at the 75,000m2 GLA M3M Financial Centre at Gurugram, which will add a 180m-tall, mixed-use landmark to the city’s skyline.

Rest of the World

Modular residential prototype

Chapman Taylor has worked in over 100 countries around the world and we are continuing to explore new opportunities across many parts of the globe.

This includes an interesting collaboration with a well-known modular construction developer looking at opportunities in the USA, Australia and elsewhere.


Deniz Mall, Baku, Azerbaijan

Although many awards ceremonies were postponed or cancelled in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Chapman Taylor still managed to win nineteen major industry awards. Among many such honours, were Vicolungo: The Style Outlets in Novara, Italy, which won the best “International Outlet Centre – Renovation” category at the 2021 Global RLI Awards.

Our masterplan for Airport City in Jeddah won a Cityscape Intelligence KSA Real Estate Award in the “Best Commercial Office” category, our design for Chengdong Elementary School in Wuxi won the “Urban Design & Architecture Award” at the 2020 APR International Design Awards, while our project to design the World Horticultural EXPO in Łódź, Poland, won Best Landscape Architecture for Poland at the European Property Awards.

In November, Deniz Mall in Baku, Azerbaijan, was awarded best “Shopping Mall” in the prestigious Prix Versailles Africa and West Asia at their 2021 awards.


Modular residential format created for the UK market

Chapman Taylor carries out extensive research in each of the sectors in which we work, in areas as diverse as off-site modular construction, Smart City design, Build-to-Rent residential formats, drone transportation hubs, sustainable and flexible office design, Sponge City principles and using materials for health security.

We have completed the process of migrating our internal document management, communications and intranet systems to Microsoft SharePoint, working with Atvero in developing appropriate software to shape the SharePoint platform to support the dynamic document and information workflows necessary to deliver high-quality projects efficiently. This will help to make our processes more streamlined, better integrate our teams and studios and further our culture of collaboration.


We have many projects under construction in countries across the world and in all our key market sectors, with notable schemes in many parts of the world.

With our continued emphasis on designing and delivering world-class, ambitious and commercially realistic designs, we look forward to seeing an even stronger recovery from the COVID-19-related slowdown and opportunities opening up in new markets.


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