This mixed-use development will create a new urban landmark at an important civic junction between Long Acre and Endell Street in Covent Garden, complementing one of the most distinct retail and tourism areas in central London characterised by a rich historic fabric and a tight-knit mix of uses. From 1850, the site has predominantly been occupied by large buildings, including the 4000-seat Queen’s Theatre, creating a prominent urban intervention in the heart of Covent Garden. The existing office building, designed by R Seifert and Partners and constructed between 1979-81, comprising eight storeys, lower and upper ground floors and a two-level basement car park, does not meet the needs or expectations of modern office occupants and is considered unsympathetic to the context and interruptive to the retail activity along Long Acre.
The design combines a contemporary workplace environment in a ground plus seven-storey office building fronting Long Acre and a residential building, ground plus eleven storeys, including ‘Intermediate’ housing or options for affordable home ownership facing the quieter Shelton Street and Arne Street. Retail space on all four aspects provides active ground-level frontages and attracts pedestrian circulation around the site while a new urban pocket space at the heart of the development realises a managed public oasis and an amenity for residents and tenants. A new public space at the intersection of Long Acre and Endell Street extends the public realm.
Platform on behalf of Northwood
Mixed-Use Development: Office, Residential (approx. 100 apartments) and Retail
The range of activities will re-activate and re-engage the island site, integrating the development within the tight urban grain and hierarchy of local routes, and enhancing the transition from the shops and restaurants of Covent Garden and Seven Dials to the cluster of offices and residences, two areas of distinctive character. Significantly, the project will repair the disparate public realm created by the succession of light-wells, moats, raised and sunken entrances and inactive frontages that detach the existing building from street activity.
© 2017 PLP Architecture
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