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Planning Approved for the Network Building and 14-19 Tottenham Mews

29th July

The London Borough of Camden has awarded planning permission to Derwent London and Piercy&Company for a major redevelopment of a prominent corner site in Fitzrovia, north of Tottenham Court Road, and a neighbouring mews building.

In a district known as London’s Knowledge Quarter and with scientific and knowledge-based organisations, dual planning consent has been approved for two buildings designed by Piercy&Company: a dual consent for the Network Building, a new sustainable building that provides either offices or research laboratories and workspace tailored to life sciences research, and Tottenham Mews, home to 23 units comprised of social and intermediate rent housing and affordable workspace.

Featuring a flexible floorplate that can accommodate different types of future use, the Network Building has an option to pioneer a hybrid steel structure combined with cross laminated timber and glazed façades delineated with a highly articulated masonry grid.

The consent is for either ground-plus-seven or eight storeys, and the building is made up of three volumes, featuring a base with expansive active frontages for retail and a dynamic streetfacing work lounge; a middle volume of workspace; and an upper level pavilion with terraces and green-roof areas around the perimeter of the building. Surrounded by new public seating and planting, the building will provide approximately 5,000sqft of retail, restaurant and café space, and 190,000sqft gross internal area of workspace on the office scheme.

Network Building will be Derwent London’s next project to pursue NABERS (a system that rates the energy efficiency of office buildings), targeting at least a four-star rating. It will benefit from Derwent’s all-electric strategy with electricity from renewable sources. The façade features a sculptural repeating module that can be fabricated off-site with minimal material waste. Other low carbon measures include low energy cooling and renewables. The scheme prioritises access to nature, introducing planting to increase biodiversity through habitat creation as well as providing rainwater harvesting and flood management through blue roofs and rain gardens. Public seating is integrated within the street elevations to animate the campus and enhance the public realm.

The Tottenham Mews development consists of a ground-plus-five storey building constructed with a concrete frame and a lightweight steel frame on the top floor. Providing high-quality and affordable accommodation in a central London location, the material palette includes red brick and warm-toned metal detailing. Echoing the mews developments in the neighbourhood, the building features juliette balconies to complement the existing buildings along Tottenham Mews. As well as being an all-electric development, the scheme will provide blue and green roofs for rainwater attenuation and biodiversity, and solar photovoltaic panels for renewable energy. The residential development has been designed to achieve Home Quality Mark 4*.

The existing structures dating from the 1950s and 1970s that currently occupy both sites were considered for re-use. However, after extensive investigation these were deemed unfit for redevelopment due to the design life of the existing building shells, restricted floor-to-ceiling heights and the inflexibility of the structures and floorplates.

Piercy&Company has a longstanding successful working relationship with Derwent London, with a proven track record on award-winning commercial developments including Turnmill, Copyright Building and 25 Savile Row.

Stuart Piercy, Founding Director, Piercy&Company, said: “The Network Building explores the possibility of both a sustainable office scheme and a life sciences building within an adaptable envelope. The scheme will transform an area of particularly poor public realm with widened pavements, extensive landscaping, active uses, and seating incorporated into the architecture. As with all our collaborations with Derwent London, we explored a beautiful palette of materials inspired by the architectural heritage of Tottenham Court Road, for example, the iconic Heal’s building.”

Paul Williams, Chief Executive, Derwent London, said: “We are excited by the prospects for the Network Building, with its potential to be either an office project or our first purpose-built life sciences building. Both options will be net zero carbon developments creating modern adaptable workspaces. We are pleased to be working once again with Piercy&Company’s excellent team.”