Bayham Place is the culmination of an extensive refurbishment of an historic old piano factory building incorporating a dramatic and contemporary triple storey roof extension. Situated on a constrained site in the renowned Camden area of London, the apartments were designed to be bright and airy with special attention given to create living spaces with high ceilings and beautiful lighting. The roof extension is a provocative addition to the skyline - perched on a traditional industrial brick facade, a juxtaposition of old and new. A fitting addition to the fashionable & rebellious history that Camden is so well known for.
The brief for Bayham Place was initially to create 15 apartments within the existing factory building. While designing the first Phase of the project, the ambigram team quickly became aware that the local area was undergoing a significant transformation due to the extensive Kings Cross regeneration that is nearby. We explained the impact and opportunity presented by this regeneration successfully to our client. During the project’s first phase, we demonstrated through design studies that we could extend the property upwards with a triple storey roof extension. As a result, the project was divided into two phases to capitalise on efficiencies in the construction programme, refurbishing the existing building whilst obtaining planning consent for the new roof extension.
The roof extension was designed to introduce three new floors with the new bottom floor replicating the appearance of the existing brick building and the two new upper floors being of a contemporary and more eye-catching appearance. The upper floors of the roof extension would be composed of materials chosen to complement the material palette of the existing building but without competing with its architecture.
The scheme was successfully argued by ambigram in the planning process. We received consent from Camden’s planning department in mid-2017 for the final Phase. Our planning strategy paid off and rewarded our client with an almost three-quarter increase in additional valuable floor area, resulting in 24 well designed contemporary apartments.
The original building benefitted from well-proportioned spaces with large windows allowing ample natural daylight. This was carried through into the new roof extension with every opportunity taken to ensure natural daylight was allowed into the building significantly reducing the need for artificial lighting. The roof extension afforded the opportunity to introduce large picture windows. In several locations within the top levels of the building, ambigram introduced “Wrap Around” windows which combined rooflights with windows maximising natural light within the apartments whilst affording the occupants impressive and panoramic views of the London skyline.
The building is located behind the popular London live music venue KoKo. Due to the proximity of this venue, the new roof extension had to meet significantly higher levels of acoustic performance to ensure the residents of the flats were not affected by unwanted sound pollution. The enhanced acoustic qualities required specialist technical attention to be given to the performance of the building envelope. As a result, the glass and building fabric needed to meet extremely strict acoustic performance criteria, which required significant co-ordination with specialist engineers to ensure the longevity of the building’s residential success.
Bayham Place presented ambigram with the perfect balance of an exciting design brief and challenging technical build. This project allowed ambigram to fully demonstrate their extensive portfolio of planning, design and implementation skills.