Interning with the Tibbalds Planning Team

Written by
7 X5 A9748

This summer we welcomed Oscar into an internship with the planning team as part of our annual programme of internships at Tibbalds. Oscar tells us how the experience has been for him.

Opinion piece

Having developed an interest in Urban geographies and city planning during my undergraduate studies in geography at the University of Leeds, I was delighted to be offered the opportunity to do a six-week internship at Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design.

I decided to apply for the placement opportunity when I saw the company’s long-standing history of promoting forms of urban planning and design which place value on people and on creating places which seek to foster social interaction at the pedestrian level. My interest in the company grew further when I saw how the company was able to deliver a vast range of projects whilst remaining true to its core values, whilst ensuring that places are planned and designed with people and the planet in mind.

As someone with relatively limited experience and knowledge of planning and design, I decided to approach the opportunity with an open mindset, excited to take on new challenges and to gain insight into how city development takes place on a number of levels. Throughout my placement, I was based in the planning team and was able to develop my understanding of how cities can be developed in ways which benefit both people and the environment.

During my time at the company, I have worked primarily on a project at Hadley Street which forms part of the Camden Council’s New Homes for Small Sites Programme, the proposal is to demolish an unused parking structure to free up land for potential future residential development. I was particularly pleased to work on this project as it enabled me to gain insight into the process of how brownfield sites can be changed to better benefit communities, the environment, and cities as a whole. As part of this project, I visited the site, which proved useful for gaining insight into its current informal uses. I assisted the team with a number of inputs to the planning application, including researching relevant local and national planning policy to draft a planning statement and complete the planning form for the application. This was highly useful and a good introduction to how policy is implemented in planning, and all the necessary considerations that must be addressed when planning for development. I was also able to attend project meetings and liaise with the client and consultant team.

A standout element during my time at the company was the ability to work on a wide array of projects. This aspect of working for the company is highly enjoyable as it offers opportunities to see the scope of work that Tibbalds is involved with. It also provides valuable insight into the planning system and planning development at several scales; from planning applications for small sites to the masterplanning of new towns.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time as an intern at Tibbalds and would like to express my gratitude for the warm welcome and subsequent guidance and help I received from the passionate and talented people at Tibbalds. I have since taken a part-time job at Tibbalds alongside my upcoming Masters degree in Urban Design and City Planning at University College London.