Greenwich Community Building

The Greenwich Peninsula Masterplan, prepared by Farrell & Partners, received outline planning consent in February 2004.

Following an invited competition, DSDHA were appointed alongside Pilbrow & Partners and CJCT in April 2013 to begin developing proposals for the second phase of development, comprising five development plots and a historic Coal Jetty. 

Plot M0119, now known as the Aperture is a mixed-use community building, located at the heart of the development. The brief comprises a retail unit, café, and flexible community use spaces on the ground floor, with crèche, prayer space, estate management facilities and gym above. The community building brief was generated in response to the Section 106 planning obligations attached to the outline planning consent granted to the original masterplan. These planning obligations set out requirements for a multi-faith prayer space and community space, which the community space balances with commercial uses.

The design of the community building has emerged in response to its distinctive, wedge shaped plot, and location at the heart of Phases I and II. The three-sided building rises 5 storeys, with prominent and permeable street frontage to Chandlers Avenue, Barge Walk and Reminder Gardens, a new neighbourhood square. 

Above ground floor, the building massing pulls back at the northern end, creating a first floor terrace for use by the crèche. A roof terrace is also provided for gym users. Central entrances open onto a shared lobby, with a feature accommodation stair connecting the varied building uses vertically.

The building features high levels of glazing at ground floor, to emphasise the community hub’s open and welcoming nature. A screen of vertical anodised aluminium fins and perforated corrugated aluminium panels wrap the building, evoking the language of the industrial gas holders that once stood on the site, and creating a range of transparencies in response to various building uses and views out. 

The community building targets BREEAM Very Good. A significant proportion of spaces are naturally ventilated, and the perforated façade acts as a brise soleil to minimise solar gain. The adjacent neighbourhood garden was created by pushing the built form south on the site. Ecology studies have been carried out to ascertain how best this garden and the building’s green roof can facilitate wildlife and biodiversity on the peninsula.

Structural Engineer: Price & Myers  / OCSE
Services Engineer: Foreman Roberts / OCSE
Quantity Surveyor: Gardiner & Theobald 
Cost Consultant: Gardiner & Theobald 
Landscape Architect/ Designer: Turkington Martin Studio
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