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Take two for Make's Chiswick Octopus

Ken Shuttleworth’s practice Make has re-submitted plans for its Octopus office development at Chiswick Roundabout in Hounslow in West London

The studio’s first design was refused permission by Hounslow’s planning committee in March 2010 primarily on the grounds that the building, which will be shrouded in LEDs and advertising boards, would be distracting to drivers on the M4 motorway.

However at the subsequent inquiry, the planning inspector gave a ‘clear judgement in favour’ of project backer London & Bath Estates, concluding that the huge advertising screen would have no adverse impact on highway safety.

Even so the design team has removed the East facing motorway level advertising screen and dropped the height of the Octopus - so called because of the series of ‘tentacle-like’ blocks at its base - by 3m.

Make's re-submitted plans for its Octopus office development at Chiswick Roundabout in Hounslow in West London

Source: HayesDavidson

Make’s re-submitted plans for the Octopus

Shuttleworth said: ‘Our revised design has retained its unusual, highly sculptural form but has a far more simple silhouette which we believe to be appropriate for the potential of this gateway location.

 ‘As well as providing a variety of accommodation, the scheme interacts as an art form – on a distance level, from the motorway, and also on a more human scale, on the groundplane.  In addition to green walls, a roof garden and extensive landscaping on the ground level we have proposed a number of sustainable measures including solar shading, CHP, borehole cooling and rainwater harvesting.’

The reworked scheme is expected to be re-consider by Hounslow’s planning committee later this year. Before the Octopus, architects LOM had also drawn up plans for the site - a 28-storey office tower dubbed the Pinnacle - but those proposals were dropped.

Full details of scheme amendments:

1.   A reduction in the overall height of the building from 52.5m to 49.5m.
2.   An increase in the volume of the office space provided from 2,745 to 4,825 square meters to increase the employment and economic benefits and also to remove the ‘void’ within the building as previously viewed from Gunnersbury Avenue.
3.   A new 305m² retail showroom space on the ground floor.
4.   The complete removal of the East facing motorway level advertising screen, which had faced the roundabout and the Thorney Hedge Road and Wellesley Road conservation areas.
5.   A reduction in the size of the West facing motorway level advertising screen.
6.   A new glazed grand entrance, on Gunnersbury Avenue.
7.   The relocation of the car park from the surface into a basement level, allowing for an attractive landscaping plan across the site.

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