Location: Lambs Passage, City of London
Client: Nicholas King Special Projects
Completion Date: 2009
Grafik Architecture were originally commissioned to produce a technical and construction package for a previously consented residential scheme with commercial space at ground level.
Towards the end of the construction programme there was no response to the marketing of the commercial space and the client instructed the re-design of the ground floor as residential accommodation.
Several alternatives were produced for discussion with Islington Council and subsequent planning applications made for either entirely residential or with part live-work studios. Unfortunately their proposals were refused and not supported at appeal, on policy grounds.
A fresh approach was needed and in principle a Hotel use would meet Islington policy and also demand in the City.
Podhotels London Limited was formed specially for this project and to meet a growing demand for low cost, basic accommodation in the City. Grafik developed a range of three grades of “Pod”, single, double / twin and premium, each with en-suite facilities, air-con, internet link, satellite TV and workstation.
These modules would be constructed off-site and “plugged in” to the existing shell served by corridors off an electronically controlled entrance system and foyer with modest vending facilities.
Grafik proposed that the entire ground floor façade should be “interactive” to promote interest and an active frontage to the very narrow, dark, Lambs Passage.
An early meeting with Islington Planners to table the design for a sculpted, reflective façade with integral lighting and signage was very positive.
The design was advanced resulting in 44 pod units being planned into the existing space and incorporating structure, services and access positions.
A detailed planning application supported by market research, capacity studies, daylight studies and full computer modelling, was submitted to Islington Council which was sadly refused.