The perfect balance

Monday 25 Jun 2012

Immense floor space at Cannon Place afforded by breathtaking cantilevers

One Cannon Place is a building that has risen to the challenge. The building, designed and engineered by Foggo Associates, is set to become an important piece of architecture in the City of London and had to react to many varied difficult site constraints dictated by the site. The result is a carefully considered and innovative architectural achievement.

The brief was set by Hines - the building’s owners - who had the vision for a new landmark office building and was explained by the client as ‘a scheme which builds upon Hines’ desire to enhance the urban fabric of the City of London’. The site, set above Cannon Street station, was subject to many planning restrictions, for example the building was limited in height due to its proximity to St Pauls Cathedral, and had to be raised to meet requirements over railway lines. It’s these and many more restrictions that helped to shape the design language of the building.

Foggo Associates used their structural and service engineering expertise to design the impressive structural steelwork that allows the main volume of the building to sit above Cannon Street Station with the majority of the building relying on extensive cantilevering systems for its structural integrity. Inside the spaces the need for columns has been removed due to the external structural system that really adds to the dramatic visual impact this build has.

Carefully placed atriums allow for light to flood into the central parts of these deep floor plates and house the exposed lift shafts. The whole building is designed to visually impress and the entrance up into the main building is not excluded from this, with a striking red wall and escalators that penetrate through them up into the atriums. It is essentially a glass box floating above Cannon Street Station and the steel work that has been left exposed really gives the building identity.

As well as the new offices above Cannon Street, Hines and Foggo Associates have also redeveloped the station itself, with brand new open public spaces underneath the offices and the entrances being fitted with glazed walls to protect commuters from the elements. “To realise Cannon Place has taken an extraordinary team effort,” explained David Warrender from Foggo Associates and the result is an extraordinary building, structurally and aesthetically. Arup acted as Project Managers on the scheme.

Matthew Goodwill

Key Facts:

Commercial Offices Urban design
United Kingdom

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