|Location||London, United Kingdom|
|Categories||Architectural Design > Houses/Villas|
This is redevelopment project of a 1 ha site currently occupied by 30-40 year old commercial buildings in London’s rapidly developing district Southwark. In order to receive planning permission for a high density scheme including a 100 m landmark tower, we needed to argue how the development contributes to the realisation of London Borough of Southwark’s aspirations for the wider area. It had to demonstrate how it will transform the neighbourhood St George’s Circus into an active node, forming a new destination for high quality local shopping, eating and leisure activities and create a generous neighbourhood public space.
The buildings act to repair the historic form of the circus and introduce a new landmark. A 28-storey masonry tower emerges from the block, set politely one building back so as not to dominate. Its slender façade is turned to address the obelisk at the focal point of the circus, giving it its hexagonal form. The group of new buildings lines the south-eastern end of Blackfriars Road and fronts St. George’s Circus, an important hub from which boulevards connect to the 18th century river crossings at Lambeth, Westminster, Waterloo, Blackfriars and Southwark.
The building facades draw influence from historic warehouses of Southwark and Clerkenwell. The public street frontages employ a joyous variety of stock and colourful glazed bricks while the backs remain relatively simple and plain. The modelling and enrichment is classical without being traditional and is enhanced in prominent places such as the entrances and the tops.