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Union North comes down to London for Boundary Estate scheme

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Liverpool-based practice Union North has been given the go-ahead for this scheme in the heart of east London's historic Boundary Estate.

The £2.5 million conversion project in Hoxton will transform a Grade II-listed Victorian schoolhouse into galleries, studios, a café and accommodation for artists.

A lightweight, two-storey rooftop extension - designed to echo a 'pile of fruit in a crate' - has also been incorporated in the scheme, designed for the cultural organisation aFoundation.

Now a conservation area, the Boundary Estate was the first social housing project in the country when it was created following the clearance of the Jago slum.

As a result, the practice has worked closely with heritage bodies on the Club Row development throughout the planning process.

Project architect Lance Routh said: '[Our] bold response has been strongly supported by English Heritage for delivering a clear reading of the historic building and creating exciting new architecture of a very high quality.'

He added: 'English Heritage recognises that architectural heritage, while often synonymous with conservation, is also about new and significant modern buildings and creating historic buildings for the future.'

by Richard Waite

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