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Duggan Morris wins planning for 'largest scheme yet'

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Duggan Morris Architects (DMA) has landed planning permission for this 14,000m² office building at King’s Cross - the practice’s biggest project to date

The 10-storey block, known as R7, will sit alongside Stanton Williams’ Central St Martins school of art and design and is described as a ‘highly flexible building’ which will be able to ‘accommodate smaller, growing companies or larger occupiers requiring a whole floor or more’.

Clad in two-toned, light rose pink and deep copper pink metal panels, the scheme features a three-screen cinema and shops, accessed from a 7m-high entrance lobby.

Each office floor, which can be sub-divided, will have at least one terrace, with a large, shared roof terrace on the ninth floor. A ‘cycle spa’, located at basement levels, will provide 260 bike spaces, changing rooms and showers for the office workers.

Work is expected to start on the scheme immediately and is due to complete in 2017.

R7 building at King's Cross by Duggan Morris Architects [approved April 2015] - lobby

R7 building at King’s Cross by DMA - lobby

The architect’s view

Joe Morris of DMA:
‘This is the largest thing we have ever done by some margin. For us it has been one of the most significant and important schemes we have been able to work on. It has been a real challenge to get this building to work at this scale and in this context.

This is the largest thing we’ve done by some margin

‘We see it as a stepping stone into potentially different sectors and typologies. When we were first given the chance to work on this we couldn’t demonstrate to anyone, let alone Argent, that we could build an office of this scale.

‘But we have shown we can do it – and have introduced a much richer programme than a simple office block and shown we are open to dialogue. I hope it opens doors. But we are already brushing shoulders with the likes of Derwent, Stanhope. Lend Lease and British Land.

‘The Cycle to MIPIM, where I talked to the client, was undoubtedly a significant contributing factor to us landing this contract. 

‘We started working on this scheme in summer 2013 and over that time we’ve grown from an office of 20 staff to one of 50 people.  But, in the ten years since we set up, we haven’t fundamentally changed the way we work.

‘The design for R7, like our other projects, has been through rigorous physical modelling. Every part, every iteration has been modelled.’

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Readers' comments (1)

  • The detail of that elevation alone, never mind the massing, is worth an essay. Hope one of your more sensitive correspondents will be telling us all about it in due course. Brits are best at offices. One for the BCO to chew over in Chicago.

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