towers contain workspace for various
companies, connected by new, simple internal
stairs and openings.
The middle tower is dedicated to shared
spaces, break-out and cafés, configured
to support informal working and chance
encounters. These spaces act as a buffer zone
between individual companies in the east
and west towers, allowing them to expand
temporarily without additional fit-out or
Within this central space, a cascading
terrace of new slab openings, stairs and
suspended concrete platforms creates
long diagonal vistas through the building,
reorganising the structure into a collection of
neighbourhoods connected by common areas
– a direct reference to the city itself. This
arrangement of steps and platforms creates
a number of ‘accidental’sitting and working
spaces with floors and ceilings doubling as
seating and workbenches.
Other work floors are connected by a single
dramatic helical stair, cast in-situ with rough
sawn timber formwork to unashamedly
replicate the shuttering seen on the exterior
of the National Gallery.
By locating working space in the lower
parts of the building, the upper two floors
are liberated for shared staff and hospitality
uses, including a 200-person timber-lined
amphitheatre, retrofitted into the fabric of
the existing structure by reinforcing and
retaining the glazed façade and removing
of rib-deck slab. A
café, bistro, private dining room and new
roof terrace are also located here, giving
optimum views over London to the north,
east and west – and democratic access to all
These spaces double as work settings –
from small and intimate to large and noisy
– and together define a shared architectural
identity for the group companies.
Many buildings along the Thames Path
have become important London landmarks.
The Royal Festival Hall,National Theatre,
Tate Modern,Oxo Tower and Shakespeare’s
Globe are all established cultural points.
At an urban scale, the ambition of the Sea
Containers fit-out was to make shared and
common activities visible from the river,
drawing it back into the cultural, creative and
commercial life of the Thames.
‘Accidental’sitting and working spaces
with floors and ceilings doubling as seating
Middle tower break-out space.