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BUILDING PROJECTS


INDIGO HOUSE RICHMOND


Escaping the pastiche


Wimshurst Pelleriti, the architects behind a renovation and extension of a historic office building in London, explain how the practice pushed for a modern addition, rather than a proposed ‘pastiche’. Jack Wooler speaks to Leo Pelleriti


Wimshurst Pelleriti (WP). With the project being located in the heart of a conservation area and being surrounded by historic properties, many of which are listed, the project required a sensitive approach.


I According to Leo Pelleriti, co-founder of


WP, however, the practice wanted to avoid creating a “pastiche” of history, and instead intended to create something that – while still conscious of its surroundings – would provide a modern addition to the site. In order to achieve this and meet the aims of the client, CBRE Global Investors, WP submitted plans for a “carefully detailed” glass extension on the ground floor where there was no impact on the conservation area, a “more sensitive” approach to the roof extension which overlooks and can be seen from surrounding properties, and a new second floor constructed in the place of an existing plant area.


Planning was approved within five months, and the building now stands completed, 15 months after the permission was granted.


Opportunities


Being based locally in west London, Leo and the practice were advising CBRE Global on their commercial properties in Richmond when Indigo House came into the picture.


n a compact site in central Richmond, London, a historic building has been revitalised and extended by architects


Leo says: “They had been trying to redevelop this site in particular for a few years to upgrade its quality and spaces, but for some reason, they failed. “After visiting the site, we started looking at potential opportunities for development, and we came up with a number of different options and extensions – which eventually led to the final design which stands today.” The building was erected between 1960 and 1978. From 1909-1911 until then there were different buildings used as a stable yard and a motor garage, Holbrook Motor Works.


In 2015, the owners got planning for change of use to residential. This application was never implemented however, and in 2016 the owners decided to renovate the building and increase its value – with commercial use being the chosen route to take. As such, after a few failed proposals from other practices, WP were brought in to create a new planning application that would make better use of the site – and achieve what others couldn’t.


Applications


Achieving planning was no easy task, largely due to the complexity generated by the building’s neighbours. Leo describes the process: “We spent quite a bit of time in planning because of the location – being surrounded by Grade II listed buildings meant it was quite challenging in terms of matching the heritage and local design.


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