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Erskine's Ark set for internal overhaul

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Richmond-based practice DN-A has won an extraordinary commission - to totally transform the internal structure of Ralph Erskine's famous west London icon, The Arc.

Developers GE Real Estate, Landid, and O and H Property have taken on the practice, which was set up by three former Aukett directors, to look at ways to make the landmark building easier to let.

Despite being one of the capital's most recognisable offices, The Ark has had a far from successful commercial history. It has been let for only four years since it was completed in 1989.

The architect plans to change the arrangement of the floorplates, a move that will increase the lettable space from approximately 13,000m 2to 15,000m 2.

The practice argues that the move will retain a 'sympathy' for the original building, creating two volumes at either end of the building, which resemble in plan a 'keyhole' form. These spaces will allow all floors a view up to the dramatic roof.

For images of the planned work, see today's AJ.

by Ed Dorrell

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