This 14,900m² project acquired by W Real Estate in December 2018 restores, retrofits and extends the Grade II-listed Arding & Hobbs department-store building in south London, to deliver modern office and retail space for the city’s Clapham urban hub. Led by architect Stiff + Trevillion, the scheme introduces a flexible internal organisation and adds two upper storeys, all while reusing the existing structural frame and foundations. The project targets BREEAM Excellent, and gained planning approval in November 2020.
A Grade II-listed, former department store is regenerated into modern, flexible office and retail
The existing, architecturally ornate building comprises four above-ground storeys with one basement level, and dates from the late 19th century, having been originally designed by James Glen Sivewright Gibson – a prominent architect of the Victorian and Edwardian era. The building sits almost next-door to the massive Clapham Junction regional railway station, and falls within London’s Wandsworth administrative borough.
Working together with the architect, our design reuses the existing structural and architectural fabric wherever possible, focussing on localised repairs and strengthening to accommodate the spatial modifications and new extension loads through the retained primary frame and foundations; extending the building’s designed life.
Much of the proposed works comprise new openings within floor plates and walls, to allow new service risers and circulation pathways respectively, while selected structural elements are concurrently removed to allow the modernised layouts. The north core is removed and in-filled with additional floor area, while the central core is retained and upgraded to integrate all existing and new levels. The basement is also lowered in some areas to provide greater occupant headroom, and thus functionality.
The two-story rooftop pavilion is set back from the façade to help limit the extension’s visual impact to the surrounding local area, and houses further office spaces while also providing access to the remaining rooftop areas, which in turn become functional terraces. These new upper levels follow the existing column grid, and rest upon the existing columns and spine walls, applying a lightweight steel and timber structure that requires only minimal modifications and transfers within the volume below.