Tigg Coll Architects were appointed for the 20,000sqft refurbishment and extension works for this building by successfully winning an invited competition. Tigg + Colls approach to the brief was to consider the building more holistically improving spatial relationships across the full 32 storeys of the building, and radically reorganising, extending and refurbishing of the common spaces. The developed brief delivered new student study and social spaces, cinema, café spaces and large auditorium space. The project was shortlisted for the FX international design awards and was championed as the Client’s flagship residence.
The proposals sought to move away from the institutionalised, wipe-clean, bright coloured aesthetic traditionally associated with student facilities, to a sophisticated and inspiring environment more akin to an identifiable sense of home than typical student accommodation. A reinvention of student accommodation as a setting which adds to the student experience, fostering social connections and helping to create a sense of community.
In addition to the refurbishment, proposals included new extensions and interventions, aiming to create exciting architectural spaces and unique selling points to set it apart from market competitors. Redundant plant room space on the 32nd floor was converted to a library with incredible views across London. Existing storage space in the Basement and Ground Floor were converted to provide new study spaces, Cinema, and Karaoke rooms.
The most substantial intervention was the enclosing of one of the underutilized atrium spaces at Ground Floor Level. Previously a landlocked courtyard, the space was reinvented with a sculptural ETFE roof to create a focal point and multi-functional event space. The geometry introduced a new complexity and dynamic movement to a simple courtyard and enables the space to be used for a wide range of events from screenings and lectures, as well as providing informal work and meeting space. Identifying opportunities within the existing building were key to provide sustainable solutions for the Client.