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Black unwraps Lewisham Community Hub

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Black Architecture has completed this zinc-clad, BREEAM Excellent-rated community building in Lewisham, London

Taking ‘inspiration from covered markets’, the two-storey building replaces a burnt-out pub in Bromley Road.

The ground floor contains the building’s public functions: a credit union, café, low cost business units and a training kitchen with an office for the Phoenix Community Housing above.

Capable of accommodating up to 140 staff the 1,073m² open plan office sits beneath a north lit, saw tooth roof to provide daylight throughout the deep plan. An antrium at the scentre of the building allows natural light to penetrate to the ground floor.

The lower floors of the building, which is constructed with a timber structural frame and Structural Insulated Panels, is clad with ceramic tiles with the upper floor clad with a vertical, zinc rainscreen.

To achieve a rating of BREEAM Excellent the building is passively ventilated with openable windows and rooflights, energy for space heating and cooling is provided by air source heat pumps and on the south facing slopes of the saw tooth roof a photovoltaic array generates 25,400 kWh/year providing 50 per cent of the building’s annual hot water requirements.

Architect’s view

Paul Hinkin, managing director, Black Architecture

‘This project continues to develop our user centred design philosophy, developing ideas from our Catholic Aid for Overseas Development (CAFOD) HQ and Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) 8 Storeys Gate, all of which place building users at the epicentre of the design process.

‘I believe that we are on the threshold of a period of rapid change in the way that buildings are designed, requiring the rejection of stylistic determinism and allowing holistic social, economic and environmental forces to directly shape A New Sustainable Architecture.

‘Owner occupiers like Phoenix are leading the sustainable development agenda and it is great to work with clients like them who have high expectations, limited budgets and demand holistic solutions that create enduring social, economic and environmental value.’

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