Gresham street makeover complete

Niki May Young
Wednesday 03 Dec 2008

KPF designed office completes in Gresham Street

Kohn Pedersen Fox-designed 20 Gresham Street has completed marking a close to the significant transformation of the West end of Gresham Street over the past few years.

Located diagonally opposite the City of London’s Guildhall entrance at the corner of MilkStreet, the building reveals its true complexity when approached from theBank of England at the Eastern end of Gresham Street. The MilkStreet/Gresham Street corner is highly visible, due to the geography ofthe street and the placement of neighbouring buildings. It has adistinctive colouration and its form is curvilinear at roof level. Thebuilding marks this important corner by extending the roof form to theground and gradually sets back over the full height of the curvedfacade.

The vertical roof facade extends along Gresham Street at ground andfirst floor level forming the entrance lobby facade. Two revolving doorsare placed on the apex of the corner. They are designed to mark thetransition from a bustling city street into a calm, ordered world byintroducing a degree of solidity that frames the view into the entranceand reveals back painted burgundy coloured glass panels that arerepeated on a journey through the building. Once inside, a doubleheight cathedral like entrance space lined with a sculpted travertinewall and a monumental reception desk creates an environment that ismore reminiscent of an art gallery than an office lobby.

From the entrance area, the vertical circulation elements; escalators tothe first floor and the lift lobby, act to orientate and allow access to thedealer floors at first and second floor levels and the office floors above.Upon entering the first and second floors, the benefits of the externalpre-cast composite columns that form part of the external elevation areevident. The 30,000 sq ft floor plates have only seven internal columnsand 18m spans, this accentuates the sense of unimpeded space andallows for greater degrees of flexibility in the types of space generatedas well as creating the potential for multi-tenancy occupation.The atrium is located behind the central core and extends from thethird floor to the roof. Its balconies animate the space and the base canbe occupied as office space.

Key Facts:

Architecture
United Kingdom
Commercial Offices

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