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Technical Envelope


example of a multistorey parking design: there was a central ramp that allowed horses to be walked to the upper fl oors. However, English Heritage considered the building's architectural merits to be fairly limited, and granted a Certifi cate of Immunity from Listing. The initial plan was to redevelop


“None of Swift’s team had worked with the Kolumba bricks before ... Then there were the 17,000 ‘specials’ used to create complex shapes” Mike Vorster McLaren


the warehouse as an offi ce, complete with rooftop extension, and planning permission was obtained. However, subsequent assessments by Derwent London, the fi rm developing the project, revealed its unsuitability for this use. Henry Humphreys, a director at Piercy & Co, says: “Most of the interesting historic features had been ripped out; all that was left was a thick masonry facade with very small, high windows. With pressures from the construction of a Crossrail station and the area going through signifi cant change, we felt new build was the way to go.” As the scheme was developed under a JCT Design & Build contract, McLaren was responsible for completing the design, with the help of novated consultants, appointed consultants and specialist trade contractors. McLaren’s Vorster says: “As a client, Derwent London is very specifi c and prescriptive, so one of our biggest challenges was managing expectations and making sure that what they envisaged was followed through.” The development stands at a


Above: The bricks came in three colours that were designed to harmonise with the surrounding masonry, and were randomly distributed across the façade


busy junction next to the Farringdon transport, hub that will eventually bring together the Tube, Crossrail and the upgraded Thameslink service. Its six storeys are made up of two fl oors of fl exible retail and restaurant space on the basement and ground fl oors topped by four fl oors of offi ces and a fully-glazed roof-level “penthouse” offi ce, which is set back from the main facade to create an external terrace with views across London. The roof also has a photovoltaic array designed to generate 22.4 MWh a year. The main services, stairs and lift cores are housed along the rear, east-facing side, adjacent to the neighbouring property. The building's main elevation, on


Turnmill Street, folds inwards at the centre to create the space for a full-height >


CONSTRUCTION MANAGER | JANUARY 2015 | 31


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