We are delighted that our proposed refurbishment and extension of No.19 and No. 21 High Holborn received planning approval on 23rd February 2017.
The design team lead by Rick Mather Architects have been working in collaboration with The Honourable Society of Gray's Inn to develop proposals that will bring the building up to current standards and allow it to continue to support one of the primary functions of the Inn, providing modern office/chambers, retail and porters' accommodation for Gray's Inn, ideally located near Chancery Lane Underground Station in Central London.
The proposals will reinforce the Inn's presence on High Holborn by sensitively restoring and upgrading the original entrance gateway into the Inn and improving the appearance and environmental performance of the 1960s structure adjacent. The approved designs are both sympathetic to the historic setting in the Inn whilst at the same time responding to the busy, urban environment of High Holborn.
To the rear of the building an existing four storey brick addition will be removed and a new seven-storey extension inserted in its place. The new building will create additional retail space and a spacious office lobby on the ground floor, with improved access to floors above. Careful planning of the upper floors, enables future flexibility with, open plan floor plates, with secure access and cellularised servicing control, the upper floors also have access to external terraces with views over Gray's Inn and Holborn High.
The scheme will offer significant improvements to the public realm and the entrance into the Inn. The Grade II listed gateway building will be refurbished to improve its appearance, and landscaping works to the rear paddock will enhance the character of this historic route into the Inn.
The south facing elevation will feature horizontal bands of ceramic glazed tiles which will be angled to emphasise the sweep of High Holborn and animate the building's street facing facade. The ceramic cladding wraps round on to the west facing flank wall to provide a visual link between the busy street facing elevation and the historic environment of the Inn.
Tim Paul, project architect for the scheme commented "We are pleased that the designs for 19-21 High Holborn have been granted planning approval. We have working closely with both Gray's Inn and local conservation groups to arrive at a design that is both respectful of the historic environment and also forward looking. The scheme will rejuvenate a rather sad looking building and provide exemplary office space in the heart of Holborn."
The redevelopment ensures that the building services are designed to modern office and retail standards and have been carefully integrated into the architectural design to limit impact on facades and planning views.
Mark Terndrup, Director of Waterman Building Services, commented; "We are delighted that this scheme has been given the green light by the planning committee. This approval reflects the team's efforts to create modern flexible office and retail space whilst carefully respecting the historic importance of this part of the City. We look forward to taking the scheme forward to construction in the near future."
The scheme is also being designed to achieve a BREEAM rating of excellent.
The project is due for completion in May 2018.