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Surman Weston wins Hackney micro-housing contest

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Emerging architecture studio Surman Weston has won a design competition for a series of micro-apartments in Hackney, east London

The London-based practice defeated five unnamed shortlisted rivals to win the innovative commission for Hackney Council.

The project, planned to compete in 2017, will create 16 new units by reconfiguring existing spaces inside an ageing tower block known as Gooch House.

Surman Weston said: ‘The project comprises the complete reconfiguration and refurbishment of the former bedsit units in this inner-city tower-block.

‘We proposed an approach which combines high-quality, flexible materials and simple, clever uses of space to create a compact but dignified and comfortable home.’

The 17-storey tower, designed by Harry Moncrieff for Hackney Council in 1964, is located on Kenninghall Road in Clapton.

Surman Weston’s winning scheme proposes a series of 27m² bedsits featuring sleeping, bathing, storage and cooking spaces in a single room arranged around a large social area.

Last month Henley Halebrown won permission for a pair of residential schemes on the edge of the post-war Frampton Park Estate nearby.

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  • Interesting to see the return of the 'boxbed' that was such a feature of so many city tenements and rural cottages in Scotland in years gone by.

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