A Tale of Two Storeys
ThirdWay Architecture recently completed the two-storey extension of a Victorian warehouse at 34-38 Provost Street in Hoxton, London.
The work for a prominent figure in commercial property and design included a complete refurbishment of the building and creation of a design to celebrating its history.
Founding Director, Liam Spencer, explains how the focus of the project was on delivering a design and commercial success.
"Enabling our client to attract the widest range of tenants was at the forefront of our design process and as such, we were keen to provide a range of unit sizes", he says. "It was important that we provided a design that had the flexibility to suit both a single tenant throughout or several different tenants."
Inserting a new extension into an existing building with unique conditions presented a number of challenges. In addition to maintaining the Victorian timber ceiling details, the team had to meet new fire regulations, as well as navigate single stair access across seven floors. Being particularly design-minded, the client was also keen to experiment with the interplay between rich contemporary additions to the warehouse aesthetics.
The team were able to curate and maintain Victorian features with key contemporary interventions, through using anodised metalwork and heritage style openable windows offsetting the weight of the brick host building. At ground floor, the existing brick bays have been opened up to create an active street presence, a new entrance and draw natural light into the impressive duplex ground and lower ground space. New timber sash windows, a replacement of the original loading bay doors and repointed brickwork complete the exterior approach to the building.
Internally, the interplay between the original character of the building and contemporary features continues. The original Victorian timber ceiling details have been retained throughout and highlighted with simple lighting and servicing details. The new floors mirror this approach in engineered timber and pared back column details to make the most of the expansive glazing to the upper levels. Rough sawn timber flooring and a mix of exposed and painted brickwork complete the aesthetic of the well-appointed floorplates.
In the common parts, the concrete and brick staircase has been accented with warm timber details and contemporary lighting. The WC design pays playful homage to the Victorian heritage by using wall hung cast metal cisterns and feature tiling across the building. A new metal staircase that connects the new upper floors contrasts delicately against the existing building and is further accented by rich details of brass against the pared back colour scheme of the doors and ironmongery.
The project took eight months to execute, with 15,000 sq.ft of commercial office space spread across ground, lower ground and five upper floors pre-let before completion.