COMMERCIAL WORKPLACE

 

National Winner/Winner London (within M25) Region - Sponsored by Gleeds
Chiswick Park (Phase 1), London W4

Owner

Chiswick Park Unit Trust (CHISPUT)

Developer

Stanhope PLC

Architect

Richard Rogers Partnership

Landscape Consultant

West 8; Charles Funk Associates

Structural, Civil & Services Engineer

Arup

Cost Consultant

Davis Langdon & Everest

Construction Manager

Bovis Lend Lease

Agents

Jones Lang LaSalle; FPD Savills


Chiswick Park just lifts itself ahead of the other schemes which received National Awards this year because of the breadth of fronts upon which it scores. From the enterprise involved in identifying the opportunity and commissioning its development, through design and construction, to the level of service to tenants, it displays the touch of a practised client who continues to innovate without gimmick, and to pay attention to the full life cycle of a development project. Ideas which particularly appealed to the judges were:-

  • arranging the buildings around an essentially pedestrianised landscaping scheme (or "inner garden") of high quality, placing vehicle access and parking behind and under the buildings;
  • the repetition of essentially identical buildings, and the departure from the conventional wisdom that major occupiers demand differentiation of building design so that the premises make a unique contribution to corporate identity;
  • the creation instead of a strong branded identity for the park as a whole, reinforced by high service levels and a drive to create a community which extends beyond company boundaries to embrace all of those who occupy premises on the park.

The buildings themselves, by Richard Rogers Partnership, are both elegant and striking; and there is innovation here too with unusually deep floor plates (18m to central core), which avoid any sense of being oppressive through the generous floor-to-ceiling height (3m) and the quality of light achieved by full-height glazing. This also maximises the sense of contact between the occupants and the landscape.

The scheme also attacks the old cliché about clients having to choose any two of the trinity of quality, cost and time, as the buildings have also been designed for speed and economy of construction. With post-tensioned concrete floors spanning onto a precast concrete frame tied to a steel-framed central core, buildings of about 120,000 square feet are achieving structural completion within 21 weeks, and completion to Category A finish within 42 weeks. This is assisted by the greatest possible use of offsite prefabrication - including, as well as the precast concrete frame, unitised cladding, packaged air-handling plant, and ceiling tiles delivered with pre-installed light fittings.

Sustainability is served by site location (opposite the underground station and on several bus routes), by the use of fixed and adjustable solar shading, and by displacement ventilation delivered through floor grilles, reducing the overall cooling load. The project has also been the subject of a commission for the BCE to monitor and categorise waste.

Apart from its general aspiration of recognising excellence, it is a major objective of the BCO Awards to identify and promulgate best practice and learning. There is learning aplenty here for those who choose to follow.


Winner North of England / North Wales / Northern Ireland Region - Sponsored by Gleeds
Operations and Controls Centre, Phoenix Natural Gas, Belfast

Developer

Lattice Property Holdings

Occupier

Phoenix Natural Gas

Architect

Cartwright Pickard Architects

Structural Engineer

Whitby Bird & Partners

Landscape Architect

EDC

Cost Consultant

Gardiner & Theobald

Construction Manager

Bovis Lend Lease


Lattice Property Holdings, the development arm of the former British Gas, have featured in the BCO Awards before - with their building for Cellnet on Leeds City Office Park, which was a regional winner in 1999. Lattice Property Holdings, the development arm of the former British Gas, have featured in the BCO Awards before - with their building for Cellnet on Leeds City Office Park, which was a regional winner in 1999. That building was praised for its then initiative energy design, its optimal use of natural light and its tenancy for external awareness and its open configuration. The same features are displayed in the Phoenix Natural Gas Building, and the judges felt that a special award for Velor might be justified for exporting those ideas into a market where rents have barely crept into double figures.

Leanly designed and built, on the claimed Brownfield land, the building makes its impact from point of arrival, with a full height entrance portico finished in Phoenix's corporate colours clearly visible from the road and from the lough, by night and by day.

Both economy and efficiency are then served by differentiating with façades with the front façade being fully glazed to improve contact with the landscape and the lough; side elevations being stripped windows and aluminium spandrel panels, shaded by fixed louvers; and the rear elevation (which faces the car park and the airport runway) more solid. Overall, 50% of the façades are glazed, to create a trade between the energy costs of heating/cooling and lighting.

Internally, the space is sufficiently flexible to serve the needs of a great variety of users, from engineers to accountants, sales representatives to gas fitters, and call centre operators to the usual office port functions. All are arranged in generally open plan accommodation arranged as a 'u' around an atrium the base of which serves as the cafeteria and kitchen. As at Leeds, the building is designed for environmental control by mixed mode, combining natural ventilation with opening windows and displacement ventilation. The ceilings are generally exposed concrete coffers, to make use of the thermal base of conditioning the internal environment; and in winter incoming areas pre-heated by the obvious exhaust air via heat exchanges; and in summer the building is cooled by night-time cooling.


Winner Scotland Region - Sponsored by Gleeds
Excel House, Semple Street, Edinburgh

Developer

PPG (City) Ltd

Architect

Michael Laird Architects

Structural Engineer

Faber Maunsell

Services Engineer

RSP Consulting Engineers

Quantity Surveyor

CBA Chartered Quantity Surveyors


With a hierarchy of scale in the façade, a sense of order and the use of metalwork balconies, this development is a model interpretation of traditional city architecture - with a character of its own, but with Edinburgh good manners.

Internally, placement of the edge of the building, with the lifts opening directly onto the floors, has created a maximum possible amount of clear space, with light from front to back of the building, and views of the Edinburgh skyline.

There is no doubt that this space is best suited to open plan, but it has accommodated the high cellularisation needs of the solicitors who take the top floor, without becoming oppressive.

Achieved for about £90 per square foot, this is a commercially realistic but architecturally distinguished building, which makes a real contribution to the streetscape of the fast-developing Exchange District of Edinburgh.


Commended Windsor Office Park, Windsor

Client

Redrow Commercial Developments and Morley Fund Management

Architect

Hamilton Associates

Structural Engineer

Cameron Taylor Bedford

Services Engineer

John Brady Associates

Quantity Surveyor

EC Harris

Main Contractor

Laing O'Rourke

Letting Agents

DTZ; Knight Frank; Holley Blake


Commended The Daily Express Building and 120 Fleet Street, London EC4

Original Client / Developer

The Fleet Street Partnership

Project Manager

Gleeds Management Services

Architect

Hurley, Robertson and Associates

Structural & Services Engineer

Arup

Quantity Surveyor

Gleeds

Main Contractor

Kajima Taylor Woodrow


Commended Integration House, Alba Campus, Livingston

Client

Scottish Enterprise Edinburgh & Lothian

Architect, Structural & Services Engineer, Quantity Surveyor

Building Design Partnership


Commended 123 St Vincent Street, Glasgow

Client

Scottish Mutual Assurance

Architect

Abbey Holford Rowe

Main Contractor

HBG Construction

Steel Fabrication & Erection

Bone Steel

Suspended Ceilings

Soundtex Ceilings

ME & P Contractor

FES

Stone Contractor

Stirling Stone

Lifts

Thyssen