The Anonymous Widower

KPF Unveils Plans For Old Street Skyscraper

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the Architects’ Journal.

This is the sub-heading.

Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (KPF) has unveiled early plans for a 160m office tower by Old Street roundabout in East London

These three paragraphs describe the development.

The site at 99 City Road is currently occupied by a 10-storey postmodern office block developed in the late 1980s as headquarters for satellite telecommunications company Inmarsat. However, Inmarsat relocated last year and developer Endurance Land bought the site in spring for £150 million.

The new owner now wants to demolish 37 per cent of the existing building, before vertically extending it to create an approximately 37-storey tower providing an additional 45,000m2 of office space, according to early plans published for consultation.

The tower scheme would feature improved public realm around the building, as well as active frontages, café space and 510m2 of flexible community space – including a triple-height ‘great room’, which could hold markets, exhibitions, and performances.

I took these pictures these morning as I passed the site at the front of the top-deck of a 21 bus.

Note.

  1. I showed the approach to the station, to show the number of high rises in the area.
  2. The Inmarsat Headquarters at 99 City Road is on the South-East corner of the roundabout, with a new station entrance alongside.
  3. Unusually it has Inmarsat shown vertically on the front.
  4. The double-fronted curved building is the Bezier Apartments, which made the short-list for the Carbuncle Cup in 2010.
  5. The building on the South-West corner is the White Collar Factory.

The construction of the new Old Street station seems as slow as ever.

I have some thoughts.

Will The Building Fit In?

The architects’ Journal article says this.

Consultation documents said the tower’s design is ‘rooted in the distinct history of the local areas’, its appearance ‘tak[ing] inspiration from the Victorian buildings in the neighbouring conservation areas of Bunhill Fields, Finsbury Square and South Shoreditch’.

I can see some arguments as at 37 stories, it’s two higher than the Barbican towers.

Will Access Between The New Building And Old Street Station Be Good?

This map from Transport for London shows the future layout of Old Street Roundabout.

Note.

  1. The Inmarsat Headquarters is in the South-East corner of the roundabout.
  2. There is a new entrance to the station between the building and the Bezier apartments.
  3. The new main entrance to the station in the middle of the roundabout.
  4. Original plans showed a lift to the main station entrance from the surface, but two may have been built.

There appears to be a subway and two light-controlled pedestrian crossings between the new development and the station.

This Google Map shows the current state of Old Street Roundabout and the front of the Inmarsat Headquarters.

It can’t be long before developers build on the other two sides of the roundabout.

Who Will Be The Tenants?

This article on the Hackney Gazette, is entitled New 36-Storey Office Tower Proposed For Old Street.

It says this about the tenants.

The new site would contain approximately 4,000 sqm of new affordable workspaces that would be accessible to local businesses and organisations.

I suspect that these offices will be much better than some of the dumps Metier worked out of in the 1970s and 1980s.

Just promising to show the view could get a few visitors and some possible sales

Will The Building Have An Observation Platform?

At 160 metres tall, this building will be 150 metres shorter than The Shard, but it will be 27 metres than the Barbican towers.

So why not have an observation platform?

I suspect that from there, you will be able to see Hackney Mashes, as there are few buildings in between.

December 21, 2022 - Posted by | World | , , , , , , ,

1 Comment »

  1. I do not think that I should comment on London other than to say that the current Mayor is a prat who is not really concerned with welfare of the population. Just on how much £££££££££ he can screw out of the population and visitors. I wonder where the money goes, certainly not on improving life in the City.

    R

    >

    Comment by Robin Lodge | December 21, 2022 | Reply


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