The aim of the project was to transform a tired office block dating back to the early 1960’s into a modern, efficient building which meets current regulations but improves the appearance and adds to the street scene which the existing building does not. As part of the design, it was proposed to add another storey to the top to increase the floor area to fund the refurbishment works. The ground floor retail users would remain unaffected by the development.
The existing building comprises a concrete frame with infill ribbon windows, creating a horizontal emphasis that is not sympathetic to its location and neighbours. The proposals add emphasis to the vertical, by creating distinct bays to the roadside elevations, and the additional floor, set back from the building line, creates the appropriate scale and mass to relate to the neighbouring buildings and adds a definite roof that the existing building lacks. This storey will be fully glazed to lighten its visual weight to form an attractive crown at night-time.
Materially, the proposals comprise insulated render to the external walls, coloured to match the various hues in the surrounding buildings. The roof cladding are to be in silver metal.
Internally, the ancillary accommodation is re-configured, and a lift is to be inserted to serve all floors including the basement car park.
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