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BIG takes ‘first foray’ into the North with curving Newcastle office


Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has revealed its ‘first foray’ into the North East with a curved office scheme overlooking Newcastle’s River Tyne

The 12-storey scheme proposed for a disused plot of land by the quayside was inspired by the city’s sloping hills and curved bridges, according to the Danish practice’s founder Bjarke Ingels.

The 10,000m² office, called No 1 Quayside, will feature a green roof, a private roof garden and views over the Tyne on each floor. Its spiral shape is reminiscent of BIG’s Copenhill, its waste-to-energy plant in Copenhagen, which doubles as a ski-slope.

Knight Frank Newcastle is currently in pre-application talks with the city council over the scheme and is planning to launch the search for a development partner at property conference MIPIM in mid-March.

The agent described the project as the ‘third modern icon of the Newcastle skyline’ alongside Foster + Partners’ The Sage Gateshead and WilkinsonEyre’s RIBA Stirling Prize-winning Gateshead Millennium Bridge. 

Ingels said: ‘We … are thrilled to jump into our first foray into the North East. Our proposal is born from the unique conditions of Newcastle’s architectural elements, the sloping hills and the curvy frames of the bridges over the Tyne.

‘The ascending serpentine silhouette feels like a fresh yet familiar continuation of this unique urban landscape.’

Andreas Klok Pedersen, partner and design director at BIG London, added: ‘We are excited to be a part of revitalising this historic neighbourhood of Newcastle. The building is born from the unique qualities of the site.

‘It follows the hairpin curve of the road and becomes a ribbon-like building climbing up the hillside while creating a cascade of roof terraces overlooking the Tyne.’

BIG opened its London four years ago after it landed the commission for Google’s EU headquarters ‘landscraper’ with Thomas Heatherwick, currently under construction. Last year the practice was shortlisted for the Liverpool waterfront job, but was beaten by Feilden Clegg Bradley.

The practice is also drawing up plans for a Landsec office scheme on London’s Bankside.

BIG worked with local architect Xsite Architecture on the design.

Stro 04 baltic image by eyelevel

Stro 04 baltic image by eyelevel


Readers' comments (2)

  • A not unreasonable response to the city's wonderful topography - here rendered, somewhat tautologically, as "sloping hills" - but I'm not sure the materials are right for the location.

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  • The slope doesn't relieve the mind-numbing boredom of the long street elevation - compare this with the fairly unassuming but humane architecture of the elderly building next up the street.

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