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LSE Centre Buildings.

As part of the major redevelopment of LSE’s central London campus, we have collaborated with architects Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners to deliver a new tiered structure that serves as a hub for the university’s Social Sciences departments, providing a balanced mix of public amenities, departmental space and teaching facilities.

A mixed-use landmark building for the Social Sciences departments’ new public plaza at LSE’s campus at Aldwych

Location
London, UK
Client
London School of Economics
Architect
Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners
Project Value
£ 90 million
Floor Area
19,000 m2
Status
completed 2019
Expertise
Structures

The first stage of development involved the demolition of four disparate buildings, all constructed during different time periods, yet interconnected and with varying basement levels. Construction materials varied, and extensive surveys needed to be undertaken to confirm initial assumptions.

In terms of constraints, a plethora of subterranean services were carefully considered, and mapped onto plans throughout the design process, ensuring there were no clashes with the new proposals. A large 4 m sewer cuts across the new basement, and our suggestion for a divestment was successfully negotiated with Thames Water. The site’s location in a historical central area meant dealing with archaeological remains and asbestos within the existing buildings.

The new structure is split into three sections: the 2-storey Amenities Block, the 5-storey Houghton Street Block, and the 13-storey Tower Block. In all three, the superstructure comprises steel frames with 6 m by 9 m grids and concrete plank flooring. The structure is pushed to the perimeter edge to expose the columns, maximising flexibility and internal floor area.

Additional steel bracing features at either end of the 5- and 13-storey blocks, allowing us to minimise the thickness of the main core walls. In the tower block a feature steel staircase creates a series of double-height spaces diagonally throughout the building, providing a visual connection to the public plaza. Double-layered façades incorporate an inner layer to regulate the building’s thermal performance, with an external system of fins controlling solar exposure.

An atrium space connects all three blocks, and includes circulation routes and collaboration spaces between the different floors.

 

LSE Centre Buildings - Story Within

As part of the major development of LSE’s central London campus, we worked alongside Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners to deliver a new tiered structure for the university providing a balanced mix of public amenities, departmental space, and teaching facilities. Ricardo Baptista, Federica Ariu and Kieron Taylor detail the story behind the structural design of the LSE Centre Buildings.

Watch the story behind the new LSE Centre Building.

Arding
&
Hobbs.
 
Grosvenor
Square.
 
 
Horizon
 
Building.
 
Canada
Water
Plot K1.
 
Cadogan
Place.
 
 
CASPAR
I.
 
 
Kivik
Pavilion.
 
 
One
Centaur
Street.
 
Nike
myThread
Pavilion
 
Museum
of the
History of
Science.
2-12
Symons
Street
 
Southwark
Gateway.
 
 
Brindleyplace
Café
 
 
Queen
Mary
Students'
Union.
30
Kensington
Church
Street
Brulington
Danes
Imaging
Centre
Bedford
Music
School
 
Royal
Holloway
Student
Residences.
Howe
Dell
Primary
School.
39-49
Wigmore
Street
 
1
Finsbury
Square
 
London
Bridge
Glass
Sculpture.
Hilton
London
Tower
Bridge.
Bishop Challoner
Catholic Collegiate
School.
 
Butterfield
Innovation
Centre.
 
Hanover
Street
Artwork.
 
Derby
Quad.
 
 
Queens
Apartments.
 
 
AA
Rainforest
Pavilion.
 
Qasr
Al
Muwaiji