Urban design and placemaking

As our cities and urban centres become denser and need to cater for increasingly complex demands, the pressure on the built environment is mounting both in terms of function and quality. ‘Getting the place right’ requires a strong appreciation of the local context, a good dose of problem solving and creativity and a multidisciplinary expertise in making sense of practical yet crucial contingencies, especially movement and servicing. Increasingly, demonstration of how placemaking and design contribute to wider sustainable development goals is critical. Local and central governments are declaring climate emergencies and setting targets and plans for net zero carbon, while supporting equity, inclusivity, environmental protection and enhancement, alongside economic growth.

Our team brings together a mix of experts from architecture to branding, from urban design to landscape architecture, from wayfinding to masterplanning. Together, we work at both a strategic level to identify the best ways to deliver change through physical interventions, animation, engagement and branding, and at a detailed level, drawing plans for the reconfiguration of streets, public spaces or urban developments.

At Steer, we are a multidisciplinary practice with a strong understanding of the relationship between the built environment and movement and are in the unique position of having written best practice design guidance.

We can successfully deliver complex projects from visioning and masterplanning through to detailed design and implementation. Our team are conversant in residential, commercial and retail developments and we have a strong focus on mixed-use schemes around transport hubs, city centres and high streets.

How we can help you

In every project, we mobilise our full set of skills to provide urban design solutions to public and private sector clients such as city authorities, developers, housing associations and architects. Our core offer includes:

  • Urban design
  • Masterplanning
  • Capacity studies
  • Town centre strategies
  • Public realm and landscape (planning and design)
  • Complete Street (planning and design)
  • Healthy Street (planning and design)
  • First Last Mile (planning and design)
  • Visioning
  • Placemaking strategies
  • Contextual and site appraisals
  • Site planning
  • Concept design
  • Schematic design
  • Design guidelines
  • Facilitation and enabling
  • Stakeholder and public consultation/engagement
  • Design advocacy and peer review
  • 3D’s, visuals and document graphics
  • Cartography
  • GIS mapping and analysis
  • Funding and grant application

We are Steer

Yes, you are in the right place. After 40 years, we have changed our name from Steer Davies Gleave to mark our growing international footprint and our expanding portfolio into sectors beyond transport.

Explore our new website to learn more about Steer: who we are, how we work and what our future holds.