38-storey student accommodation tower in Portsmouth submitted by Scott Brownrigg
International design practice, Scott Brownrigg has submitted a detailed planning application for a new 38-storey tower - Brunel House in Portsmouth, on behalf of client, Bouygues UK. The submission seeks to redevelop a redundant twelve-storey office building located at The Hard, Portsmouth, adjacent to the historic naval dockyard and Gunwharf Quays, into a mixed-use tower.
The landmark tower will comprise 512 bed student accommodation, split into clusters of eight bedrooms with shared kitchen and living/dining room facilities. These will wrap around the back of the tower from 1st floor level up to level 19. 329 residential apartments from level 1 up to level 38 will benefit from panoramic sea views and top floor penthouses and one-storey retail at ground floor level will create a strong public realm.
Its elegant sweeping form has been designed to complement the skyline of Portsmouth, the adjacent Spinnaker Tower and Gunwharf Quays, and will provide a dramatic new vision for Portsmouth. The highpoint of the ‘prow’ is considered to be a distinct new feature on The Hard.
Angled to overlook the historic dockyard, Brunel House makes reference to maritime themes, for example, the silhouettes of sails and the vertical forms of masts are referenced in the design. Contemporary oceanic allusions are also made, with the silver/grey cladding dispersing sunlight like the surface of the sea and the sharp angled forms recalling contemporary yacht design.
The building touches the ground lightly with the 6m-high ground floor allowing the elevations to ‘float’ above the surface of the ground plane. This interface between the building and the ground is predominantly transparent and promotes a sense of openness and permeability. The building form also refers to the context of tall buildings and evokes the forms of the Spinnaker and the Gunwharf Quays Towers without imitation of these local landmarks.