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Southworks images unveiled

As well as being beautifully designed, Southworks sets a benchmark for integrating technology in support of occupier safety and wellbeing, which will be all the more important as we transition back to the office.

05/08/2020 3 min read

MiddleCap and SPPARC Architects, who are currently working on an exemplary commercial building in central London, have revealed images of the Southworks project for the first time.

Situated on London’s Rushworth Street, Southworks is designed by SPPARC Architects and includes 70,000 sq ft of office space over seven floors. The architecture is inspired by a warehouse aesthetic, which is achieved through several high quality design and specification details.

A stunning double-height entrance is formed from handcrafted Italian glazed bricks, creating a focal point for the building and allowing light to penetrate into the lobby. This feature sits as part of a simple material palette of brick, concrete and glass that references and is sympathetic to the adjacent historic context. A series of projected bays creates interest on the street elevation and breaks down the building’s overall mass.

Internally, steel framed windows and exposed services complete the contemporary and raw finish. A robust, loose-fit fit-out will offer flexibility to future tenants, and a series of roof terraces will provide additional amenity space to all occupiers.

MiddleCap are also taking every step to ensure technology supports a healthy workplace and wellbeing through a number of innovative measures. Smart sensor technology will act as the digital backbone to the building, collecting real time data on air quality, light, noise, and occupancy. The building will know how many people are in a meeting room or on a particular floor, for example, and this information can be used to inform how working patterns need to be managed in support of social distancing measures.

A dedicated app will allow all employees inside the building to check the air quality around their desk and review occupancy levels via real-time floorplans, giving them more control over their workspace. The building manager will be able to use this insight to alert people in the building if social distancing measures are not being followed or to offer health and wellness services. The app will also provide visitors with peace of mind, as they will be able to gain entry to the building by registering remotely to receive a QR code, avoiding the need to physically check-in at a reception desk.

The building will also provide the very best air quality by using live data to create a natural environment. For example, heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) can be continuously adjusted in real time, based on occupancy. Recent research suggests that, to help limit the spread of viruses, controlled humidity and natural air ventilation are key. Windows that open, together with smart HVAC, will deliver fresh air for tenants, with an air quality station outside of the building continuously monitoring the quality of incoming air. Direct light and air will also be available in secondary spaces like toilets, staircases and lift lobbies.

Tomáš Jurdák, Head of Real Estate at MiddleCap, says: ‘Thanks to our focus on design quality at every turn, Southworks will provide businesses with an attractive, productive and safe working environment. The technological measures we’re putting in place prioritise the wellbeing of tenants, which will be essential as we move back into the office and into a post-pandemic world.’

Trevor Morriss, Principal at SPPARC, says: ‘An area with a strong industrial legacy, a history to be inspired by, Southworks balances matters of scale, material quality and functionality to achieve a building which has its own distinct architectural style whilst sensitively cohabiting with its surrounding heritage context.’

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