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Khudi Bari – Story Within.
RA Summer Exhibition.

The Story Within

Khudi Bari – meaning ‘Tiny House’ – is a modular monsoon shelter that’s designed by the Bangladeshi architect Marina Tabassum. It’s made for inhabitants of the country’s Ganges river delta (where entire swathes of land can flood overnight), and can be hand-assembled using local materials, with a cost of just £300. AKT II’s team was engaged to reconfigure the shelter’s structural supports so that it could be demonstrated, using the thinner bamboo that’s available in the UK, as part of the 2022 Summer Exhibition at London’s Royal Academy of Arts.

Planning approval for Zone F.
Canada Water.

02/08/2022 News

Zone F, a new mixed-use scheme within British Land’s Canada Water Masterplan, has received planning approval from Southwark Council.

Don’t lose it … reuse it.
From showroom to classroom – 2012 BMW Group Pavilion.

The Story Within

Ten years on, AKT II director Edoardo Tibuzzi looks back at the BMW Group Pavilion at the 2012 London Olympics. Has the promise of creating an environmentally friendly structure that can have a meaningful purpose after the Games been kept?

Two of our buildings crowned winners.
Tall Building Awards.

21/07/2022 News

AKT II has been awarded two awards in this year’s 2022 Tall Building Awards.

Let there be (less) light.
Illuminating urban light pollution.

The Story Within

When we talk about pollution, there’s a form of it that’s almost everywhere but gets relatively little coverage: light. Artificial lighting has become integral to our modern civilisation, however its excessive use is now harming health, disrupting ecosystems, and even interfering with humanity’s understanding of the universe. In this article, AKT II’s bioclimatic associate Mattia Donato highlights the scale of the problem, and talks through what we can do as designers to create a – metaphorically – brighter future.

LSE Marshall Building – Story Within.
Inverting the question.

The Story Within

In central London, the new Marshall Building is a multifunctional academic facility that’s been designed by Grafton Architects for the existing urban campus of the London School of Economics (LSE). Inside, the project’s programmatic challenges are turned into a clear design opportunity, with a series of tree-like transfer structures that now form part of the building’s – and the university’s – architectural narrative. In this video, AKT II’s design directors Marta Galinanes Garcia and Chris O’Meara share some of the engineering insights behind this new ‘tree of knowledge’.

Google’s new office celebrates topping out.
Google Kings Cross.

08/07/2022 News

AKT II together with BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group, Heatherwick Studio and Atelier Ten, are working in partnership on delivering Google’s new King’s Cross office.

New mixed-use scheme receives approval.
Thavies Inn.

06/07/2022 News

A new mixed-use that presides over the City of London’s Holborn Circus has been granted planning approval.

Tiny houses for big challenges.
Summer of RA.

28/06/2022 News

Summer has landed at the RA, and it’s as arty and joyful as ever. The Royal Academy’s iconic Summer Exhibition showcases art in all forms, including architectural works and sculpture.

Life-sciences hub gets the go-ahead.
Vinegar Yard.

14/06/2022 News

Vinegar Yard, a new 20-storey life-sciences mixed-use development in London Bridge in Southwark, has just been recommended for planning consent from the Greater London Assembly.

Designing with less.
Approaches to regenerative design.

The Story Within

For World Environment Day, we look at the successful story behind the waterless garden in the city of Sharjah and take the opportunity to hear from Elisa Gatto – environmental biologist, expert in urban vegetation, climate change adaption strategies and land productivity – and Mattia Donato, AKT II associate on ways to synergistically produce clean energy and food.

Design for a new student centre unveiled.
The University of York.

27/05/2022 News

AKT II’s regional expansion continues with the recent selection of a new university scheme, following the winning proposal of an international design competition. We are supporting ADP Architecture and O’Donnell + Tuomey on the design of a £35m student centre at the University of York.

Hanif Kara OBE elected as advocate.
Mayor's Design Advocates.

25/05/2022 News

Good architecture and planning can make a significant difference to the way places work, both socially and on an environmental level.

Roots in the Sky.
Salvaged steel scheme.

09/05/2022 News

139 tonnes of salvaged steel from a scheme currently being demolished in the City of London will be used in the Roots in the Sky development which is due to start on site in the coming months and complete in Q3 2025.

The Hylo Building – Story Within.
Extension of a 16-storey tower.

The Story Within

Following on from our groundbreaking work on the South Bank Tower extension, we’re working with HCL Architects for our client CIT Group, where we are taking the same principle with an existing 16-storey tower in Islington and extending it 13-storeys. By doing so, we ended up saving 35% of the carbon footprint of a new-build.

AKT II working on ‘India’s greenest airport’
Delhi Noida International Airport.

03/05/2022 News

We’re thrilled to be part of the team that is designing an international airport in India. The team, consisting of AKT II alongside Nordic – Office of Architecture, Grimshaw, Haptic and STUP, were selected by Zurich Airport International after a concession agreement with the Government of Uttar Pradesh.

International design contest finalists.
Manchester Piccadilly Gardens.

29/04/2022 News

We’re supporting Studio Egret West, and have reached the final six in an international design contest for a revamp of Manchester’s Piccadilly Gardens.

Kingston University Town House crowned winner.
EU Mies Award.

27/04/2022 News

Kingston University Town House has been awarded the 2022 European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture.

The big blank – new book.
Blank: Speculations on CLT.

20/04/2022 News

Is mass timber all its hyped up to be? Jennifer Bonner and AKT II’s co-founder Hanif Kara think so, and they’ve written a book to explain why.

New Nine Elms tower gets the green light.
Apex 1.

06/04/2022 News

This proposed new high-rise development forms part of the expansive, masterplanned Nine Elms development zone in south-west London.

Oxford University receives planning permission.
Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre.

10/03/2022 News

Oxford University’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Centre for the Humanities received unanimous approval earlier this week.

PrismArch – an update.
Research project.

02/02/2022 News

We’ve been working with Zaha Hadid Architects, alongside SWECO on PrismArch. Now in its second year, we’re continuing to research into a ‘prismatic blend’ between aesthetics, simulation models, and meta-information that can be presented in a contextualised and comprehensive manner in virtual reality.

Hanif Kara awarded an OBE.
New Year’s Honours list.

11/01/2022 News

AKT II’s co-founder Hanif Kara has been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours list.

Retrofit scheme collects two further awards.
100 Liverpool Street.

30/11/2021 News

100 Liverpool Street has taken home two further award wins in the past month, after being awarded ‘Project of the Year’ at this year’s Building Awards and, winner in the ‘working’ category at the New London Architecture Awards for 2021.

A city within a city block.
And the challenge of its clashing grids.

The Story Within

Inner-city areas are becoming ever more densely populated. Mixed-use schemes are increasingly prevalent, while their conflicting spatial requirements are getting more and more challenging. The newly completed One Crown Place – a ‘city within a city block’ that’s been delivered by CBRE Development Management for MTD Group – exemplifies all of this very well. In this article, our design director Steve Toon shares some insight from the project’s new high-rise elements, and examines the engineering moves that have safeguarded their uses’ functionality.

London office tower has been granted planning permission.
115-123 Houndsditch.

22/11/2021 News

We’re supporting Allford Hall Monaghan Morris (AHMM) on a 24-storey office tower based in Houndsditch for our client Brockton Everlast.

New student building gets green light.
Plot 25.

09/11/2021 News

Plans for Plot 25, a student building within the Brent Cross Town masterplan, have received unanimous approval from Barnet Council’s planning committee.

Redevelopment granted planning permission.
120 Fleet Street.

29/10/2021 News

The proposed redevelopment of 120 Fleet Street has been granted planning permission by the City of London Corporations’s Planning and Transportation Committee.

The Beacon of Hope – Story Within.
Demountable installation.

The Story Within

The Beacon of Hope is a demountable public artwork that showcases the structural potential of Bamboo. It’s designed by artist Joseph Williams and hand-built by his Bamboology team, with some engineering from AKT II. In this video, Joseph, our engineers and Climate Art’s founding director and curator Dzmitry Suslau share some of the design innovation involved.

Five of our finest.
Royal Academy 2021 Summer Exhibition.

20/10/2021 News

The Royal Academy of Arts’ Summer Exhibition has returned for 2021, with Sir David Adjaye RA curating this year’s Architecture Room, in the theme of ‘climate and geography’. AKT II has helped to design five of the exhibited projects.

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