News and Events
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Max Farrell, Guest Editor - London Architecture Diary
With so much of architectural interest in this busy city, the big draw for me in March is the Futures Found exhibition at The Royal Academy of Arts, looking at ‘the real and imagined cityscapes of post-war Britain’. Always interesting from an architectural and planning perspective to investigate the difference between initial vision and the built reality!
The New London Neighbourhood tour of the City on the 11th March looks set to be a great event, looking at the ever-changing nature of this dynamic urban setting. From the 8th March, the RIBA also turn their attention to the Square Mile with an exhibition comparing the design methods of Mies van der Rohe and James Stirling. Again, always interesting to look at envisioned vs. realised schemes. At Farrells we had our own scheme commissioned by SAVE to provide a more contextual alternative to the Mies scheme for Mansion House. We found the poster above in the archives which shows the two very different approaches of modern vs postmodern planning, a debate which is much less polarised today (and in many ways postmodern planning is the norm now).
Over at the Barbican, there are, as ever, many points of interest on the March agenda. Thursday 23rd March marks the start of exhibition ‘The Japanese House: Architecture and Life after 1945’ whilst lectures by the Swiss architect Peter Märkli and Ryue Nishizawa, the youngest architect to win the prestigious Pritzker Prize, look set to be great events on the 10th March and 26th March respectively.
It’s definitely time to visit the Victoria Miro Gallery to see ‘Passage/s’ by Do Ho Suh. He creates 1:1 scale translucent fabric structures of the architecture of the places in which he has lived and worked around the world - fascinating work! Open until the 18th March, there can be queues at busier times but it is definitely worth the wait!
On the 14th March, LSE Cities is hosting Vienna: An Open City in Divisive Times which looks set to be an interesting debate into how an Urban Development plan can maintain the cosmopolitan nature of a city and its attractiveness to a diverse set of people, companies and investors – all pertinent questions for London in the post-Brexit referendum climate.
London Architecture Diary (LAD) is a free online resource which seeks to highlight the capital's vibrant architecture scene. Since launching in 2005, LAD has proven an essential guide to what's going on in architecture across London
Hong Kong’s British Consulate-General turns 20
The British Consulate-General complex in Admiralty, Hong Kong turns 20 years old this year. Designed by architecture and planning firm Farrells, the consulate was officially opened by Princess Anne on 30 January 1997.
This HK$290 million complex houses the British Council and the British Consulate-General in Hong Kong, the largest British consulate in the world. Opened just ahead of Hong Kong’s return to China, the complex drew international attention as an expression of Britain’s continuing interest in the territory following the handover. It serves as a regional base for cultural exchange, trade, and commerce.
Farrells director Stefan Krummeck commented: “Our Hong Kong office just celebrated its 25th anniversary last year. The British-Consulate General and British Council complex holds great significance to us. It was the first building that Farrells completed in Hong Kong.”
Winner of an architectural competition in 1992, the Farrells design was the sole proposal to suggest a low-rise structure, in keeping with the verdant hillside setting, as opposed to a monolithic high-rise. At the time, the old Victoria Barracks was being redeveloped into the Hong Kong Park. Originally home to Colvin House, venue of the Sino-British deliberations on Hong Kong’s future, much of the consular site was undeveloped. In concentrating the mass of the new building along the road, in a linear arrangement, Farrells could retain several mature trees within a garden at the heart of the site. This garden, centred on a small waterfall and stream, is visually unified with the adjacent leafy hillside.
At the same time, the buildings shield the secluded garden from traffic noise while projecting a strong street presence. The disciplined, elegant architecture projects both approachability and decorum befitting a public building. The complex houses separate but connected quarters for the consulate, the British Council, UK Trade & Investment, as well as conference facilities and a diplomatic housing block.
Farrells complete last piece of planning process on historic Chelsea Waterfront
The culmination of over a decade of positive work saw Farrells complete the planning process at Chelsea Waterfront with section 73 consent granted for new architecture in relation to the original 2005 planning consent.
Designed by Farrells for Hutchison Property Group, the redevelopment of the landmark Lots Road Power Station and eight acre site at Chelsea Waterfront combines well-loved heritage elements with first class modern design. Successfully delivering 420 further units through the planning process, this consent unlocks 165 affordable units and 255 private on the Kensington and Chelsea side of the site.
Split between two boroughs, Kensington & Chelsea and Hammersmith & Fulham, this redevelopment is centred around two glass residential towers that mirror the towers of the power station, originally built in 1904. Working alongside Formation Architects, who are designing the fitout of the power station, Chelsea Waterfront is the first development of this scale on the north bank of the Thames in over 100 years. It opens up to the river with beautifully landscaped gardens and is set to become a destination in its own right.
The Hammersmith & Fulham side is heading fast towards completion in mid-2019, with the cladding for two low-rise buildings nearing completion whilst the 37-storey tower is progressing well.
Farrells Principal Terry Farrell commented:
“We are delighted to have been granted planning consent for the redevelopment of this site. Combining contextual modern architecture with quality placemaking, Chelsea Waterfront will bring new life to the north bank.”
Kennedy Town Swimming Pool to appear in Hong Kong exhibition
The new Kennedy Town Swimming Pool will be featured at the 10 X 100 Exhibition Hong Kong Edition, opening this Friday, 17 February at PMQ in Central, Hong Kong.
The second and final phase of the Farrells-designed swimming complex opened to the public on 7 February. This phase comprises the indoor pools, including a 50-metre main pool, a 25-metre training pool, and a jacuzzi. The first phase, comprising a 50-metre outdoor pool and a children’s leisure pool, opened in 2011.
The 10 X 100 Exhibition will showcase notable architecture and urban design from Hong Kong and Mainland China from the past decade. It will include 50 works from Hong Kong architects alongside 50 works from Mainland designers.
“The exhibition is timely. We have been working on the swimming pool since the West Island Line project began, when it was decided to build the new Kennedy Town MTR station on the site of the former Kennedy Town pool at Smithfield. The full completion of Kennedy Town’s replacement pool has been many years in the making,” commented Farrells director Stefan Krummeck. “The building is unique in Hong Kong – not only due to its form, but also the materials, which include weathering zinc cladding and transparent roof membrane which floods the swimming hall with natural light.”
Likened to a futuristic spaceship by Hong Kong media, the new swimming complex owes its distinctive shell-like shape to the streets and historical tram line that define the triangular site.
The Kennedy Town Swimming Pool has won citations including Large Project of the Year 2016, awarded by the New Engineering Contract (NEC) of the United Kingdom’s Institution of Civil Engineers.
Farrells to design Singapore high-speed rail terminus
Architects and urban designers Farrells, in collaboration with AECOM, have won a Land Transport Authority competitive tender to design the Singapore terminus of the new Kuala Lumpur-Singapore High Speed Rail. The terminus will form an integral part of the Jurong Lake District, earmarked as Singapore’s futuristic second Central Business District.
Farrells have designed some of the world’s largest high-speed termini, including the Beijing South and Guangzhou South railway stations in China. In order to cope with incredibly high patronage, these stations pioneered airport-style segregation of arriving and departing passengers. In Singapore, Farrells designed Punggol MRT Station, the core of the Punggol New Town.
The design was conceived as a new civic landmark and Farrells will now develop the winning concept to address the requirements of both the High Speed Rail link and the district’s new visionary master plan currently being developed by the Urban Redevelopment Authority and the team of consultants led by KCAP Architects & Planners (KCAP). Though the railway platforms are below ground, Farrells’ design seeks to form an iconic above-ground focal point that marks this new international gateway to Singapore.
“The High-Speed Rail terminus is touted as a game-changer for Jurong Lake District, envisaged as Singapore’s second Central Business District and a ‘District of the Future’ – the new station will drive international exchange and growth there,” said Farrells director Stefan Krummeck. “The majority of the station structure is hidden below ground, so we felt it crucial to mark the station’s presence as a focal point and catalyst for the success of the district with a sculpted and elegant station hall.”
In keeping with Singapore’s reputation as the Garden City, the station’s undulating roof will be developed to become an integral element within the verdant landscape of the new Lakeside Gateway precinct. Skylights will flood the station with natural light, creating continuity between interior and exterior and celebrating the departure and arrival point for the new HSR. The station will be connected to the existing Jurong East MRT station as well as a stop on the planned Cross Island MRT line. The resulting multi-modal transport interchange will energise Jurong East as a strong economic hub, by boosting its high-connectivity and accessibility.
The 350 km Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high speed rail project will link Singapore to the Malaysian capital in only 90 minutes. The leaders of the two countries signed a bilateral agreement for the project’s development on 13 December 2016. The railway is expected to open by the end of 2026.
Final Phase of Kennedy Town Swimming Pool Opens
The second and final phase of the Kennedy Town Swimming Pool, designed by Farrells, opened on 7 February. It includes two new indoor heated pools, measuring 50 and 25 metres’ length respectively, as well as a jacuzzi. The swimming pool’s first phase, comprising a 50 metre outdoor pool and an outdoor leisure pool, opened to the public in May 2011.
The swimming pool’s completion is the capstone of the Kennedy Town MTR station project. The original site chosen for Kennedy Town Station was the Forbes Street Playground. But construction would affect a number of 120-year-old Banyan trees growing on historic stone walls. To protect the trees, the station box was shifted eastward, onto Smithfield and the site of the former Kennedy Town Swimming Pool.
A new pool had to be opened before the existing one could be demolished. The site chosen was a surface car park that boasted an uninterrupted sea view but had lain derelict since the land was reclaimed in the 1990s. To draw residents to this neglected corner of an otherwise vibrant neighbourhood, the site demanded a memorable icon.
Likened to a futuristic spaceship by the South China Morning Post, the new Kennedy Town Swimming Pool owes its distinctive shape to the streets and historical tram line that define the triangular site. Inspired by a shell, the building addresses the experience of arrival to Kennedy Town by tram or road from the east. The low-lying form of the building respects the panoramic views that nearby residents enjoyed prior to the development and draws inspiration from its proximity to the harbour.
During construction of the MTR West Island Line, the site adjacent to the first phase of the swimming pool was home to a shaft for the removal of underground spoil. After the railway line opened in 2014, construction on the pool’s second phase began.
The new Kennedy Town Swimming Pool has won awards and citations including Large Project of the Year 2016, awarded by the New Engineering Contract (NEC) of the UK’s Institution of Civil Engineers. The pool has been featured in numerous international publications including Architect’s Journal, HKIA Journal, and Archdaily.
Launch of Farrells Creative Hub
We are delighted to announce the launch of the Farrells Creative Hub! This rentable office space is open to London’s creatives and entrepreneurs who are looking for the flexibility within a creative environment.
It is well documented that London is going through a rapid transformation of the way commercial space is being designed, marketed and occupied. Our own office is in a 1930s furniture factory which, having seen many refurbishments in its long life, has accommodated everything from furniture-making to spitfire production and now architecture. Currently housing offices as well as residential accommodation, we have worked rentable office space into our internal placemaking. The Farrells Creative Hub is the latest manifestation of this living building.
So if you are looking for somewhere to start your creative business or you need somewhere to further your goals without the risk of long-term overheads, please get in touch.
For more details please see: https://hubblehq.com/office-space/2955/farrells-creative-hub-paddington
The World's Address - Qianhai
A press conference called The World's Address, hosted by Silverstein Properties and Hengyu Group, was held on 3 December 2016 in Qianhai, Shenzhen.
Farrells director Stefan Krummeck unveiled the design for the Qianhai Financial Centre (QFC). Rising on Qianhai’s most prominent development site at the edge of Qianhai Bay, the development comprises three iconic skyscrapers housing super Grade A offices and high-end apartments. All three towers boast unobstructed views over a massive coastal park.
As Shenzhen’s new central business district (CBD), Qianhai has been designed with maximum connectivity in mind. QFC is served by the largest railway hub in the area, Qianhaiwan Station, an integrated transport centre that will become the largest of its kind in Asia when complete. Numerous metro lines converge at the station, including the newly-opened Line 11 which links QFC to Shenzhen International Airport in minutes.
Farrells’ involvement in Qianhai began in 2000 with the planning of the Pearl Island concept. Today, a total of nine towers designed by Farrells are under construction (6 of them have topped out) in this dynamic new city centre.
Exhibition: On Reading Single Family House
Venue: University of Hong Kong Shanghai Study Centre
Duration: 19/11/2016 - 5/2/2017
While architectural ideas were largely experimented through the construct of single family house in the west, a very different story is being unfolded in this part of the world. With the rapid speed of development, coupled with land policy issues and pressing economic demands, the opportunity to design and build single family houses, against the backdrops of millions of collective and mass housing, is a rarity in Hong Kong and mainland China indeed. It is killing all potential commissions for practicing architects on this particular type of architecture.
“On Reading Single Family House” Exhibition includes the single family house projects in China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. These include well-known Hong Kong projects such as the "Vice Versa Houses" and Farrells' "Mount Davis Villa".
Farrells 25th Anniversary Architectural Exhibition in China
Farrells celebrate half a century in business
The Peak Magazine Interview with Sir Terry Farrell
Click here to read Sir Terry Farrell's interview with The Peak Magazine, published to coincide with Farrells' 25th anniversary in Hong Kong.
Farrells open their studios, discuss the future of workplace and tour the Royal Albert Dock
The London Festival of Architecture celebrates London as a global hub of architectural experimentation, practice and debate. Farrells involvement generated inspiration into the future of workplace design, through a panel debate ‘Working London, Making London’ at our recently finished project The Eagle, and a tour of our current workplace masterplan Royal Albert Dock. Farrells took this year’s theme, ‘community’ to heart and we opened our studio to the public, excited to share our west London workplace and the future of Edgware Rd. We were flattered by the positive public response we received from all our visitors, sharing the history of our art deco building and our current projects.
Working London, Making London was a panel debate we hosted in partnership with Mount Anvil at The Brew, a co working space within our newly completed mixed use development The Eagle. We invited leaders in the industry to debate ‘What is the future of work in London?’ chaired by Emily Wright, Features & Global Editor of the Estates Gazette. We heard the perspectives of the developer, the engineer, the architect, the designer, the furniture maker, the economist and the end user. Themes we discussed were workplace wellness, technology, workplace hubs, trends such as coworking and coliving, global economies and resourcing, retrofitting and London’s capacity for development. The free event was open to the public and attracted clients and other design practices as well as the NLA.
“London is going through a rapid transformation in the way commercial space is designed, marketed, and occupied,” said Farrells Partner Peter Barbalov. “New emerging models of co-working, social-enterprise hotels and new modes of ownership are rapidly changing the established paradigm of ‘CAT A commercial space’. Our challenge as practitioners, designers and occupiers is to go beyond the current trends and understand the deeper socio-economic shifts and changes informing this new ‘rent economy’.”
Andrew Clough, Director at The Brew "the future of the London Workplace is co-live, co-work, simple." The Brew offers customers coworking facilities from just £10 a day in a newly renovated open plan office space complete with IT equipment, meeting spaces, coffee shop and wine bar. The wine bar Papilles has a very contemporary/ pop-up vibe with a fantastic wine menu. Eagle House, part of The Eagle development built by Mount Anvil and Farrells, is located on City Rd. moments from Old Street roundabout amidst the start up revolution. Trends such as coworking and coliving aren’t alone in the quest for adapting the future of workplace design. Open desk employ the latest C&C technologies to design and distribute custom office furniture. Shipping hardware as software, the designs can then be made with local resources and materials. The pieces can then be erected within 20 minutes. Panellist Scarlett San Martin says the company operates on the model that it is ‘easier to ship recipes than cakes and biscuits.’
Andrew Comer from BuroHappold reminded the audience that London is being driven by the need for more housing and looking at how people want to live in the future will change the ways in which lives are led and therefore the future of workplace design. It also comes down to the practical side, where is the space? How do you deliver the commercial space so that is affordable and available for the different sizes of businesses we are seeing shape London? “With so many issues challenging a city like London –global warming, technology advances, international competition, population growth, resource shortages – we must give greater thought to the future and how that economic dynamo can be given the best possible chance of ongoing success.”
Rob Partridge, Director at AKTII, talked about their project in West London for the Monsoon headquarters, which avoided columns & grid, instead using a triangulated diagrid, creating spaces that maximise interaction. He also spoke about the White Collar Factory, a new building in East London, which aims for total flexibility for multiple tenants, even having areas of the floor plate where the slab can be knocked out by tenants wanting change at points in the future. Through this, he reinforced that we can work with the existing buildings we have in London, we just need to use the technology to make them adaptable. When designing new builds, we should be thinking about how they could be changed in the future across multiple sectors.
Farrells Partner Peter Barbalov also asked "What are offices good for?" and pointed out how they must compete with a whole host of other attractive places of potential work in the contemporary city, from cafés to the home. “The coffee machine conversation is the key to a successful working environment. Short spells of communication and respite which brighten up the day and inspire staff. Perception of the workplace as a 9-5, cellularised and autonomous activity has changed dramatically.”
Farrells collaboration with Mount Anvil on The Eagle development was really successful. You can read more about the project in the June issue of The Estates Gazette here. Panellist Andrew Reid, Director at Mount Anvil confirmed the Mount Anvil legacy “So why is a residential developer building commercial space in the first place? The answer is simple. Workspace brings life, energy and jobs all of which breeds community. It is good business for Mount Anvil to create innovative spaces where people can live, play and work.”
The debate concluded with Emily Wright asking the speakers to sum up the future of workplace design in one word. Indy Johar from Architecture 00 inspired the audience with his simple yet direct answer ‘empathy.’ Too often we forget amidst the hustle and bustle of working life that our future depends on ‘people.’ And the only way to move forward with this debate is to think about how humanity is evolving.
We are well known for our masterplans, although we work on both large and small scale projects. Recently completed boutique workplace project Albemarle Street has just been shortlisted for the AJ retrofit awards. Jumping to the other end of the scale, Royal Albert Dock, is a 35-acre site being transformed by Farrells on behalf of ABP into a gateway for Asian and Chinese business seeking to establish headquarters in Europe as well as other businesses wanting to set up in the capital. Farrells teamed up with the GLA for the festival to guide visitors through the Royal Albert Dock site and share the proposal.
The workplace debate is not over, the NLA insight study for this autumn is also ‘What is the future of work in London?’ Farrells will continue to support thought leadership and research with these themes in mind this September as part of the study. The GLA are very much involved in the discussion and we will endeavour to collaborate with them on issues facing workplace design in London later this year.
Farrells thoroughly enjoyed being part of this year’s London Festival of Architecture. Our current workplace brochure can be found here.
Planning in London Issue 98 July- September 2016
Farrells latest column in Planning in London magazine 'Autonomous Vehicles and Future Placemaking' by Farrells Partner Nigel Bidwell is out now. Read the full article here.
The Eagle has Landed. Estates Gazette feature The Eagle in their June publication
In this weeks issue, the Estates Gazette feature our project The Eagle. You can read the full article here. The article includes interviews with Sir Terry Farrell and Mount Anvil developer Killian Hurley.
Kennedy Town Swimming Pool awarded NEC Large Project of the Year 2016
The former Kennedy Town Swimming Pool on Smithfield was demolished to make way for a new MTR station, necessitating the re-provisioning of the pool on a nearby site. The first phase of the new pool complex was completed in 2011, while the second and final phase is slated for completion this coming October 2016.
The new swimming pool is situated at the junction of Sai Cheung Street North and Shing Sai Road. The existing residential towers and the historic tramway form the backdrop for this new waterfront icon, which takes a unique triangular form derived from the shape of the site.The pool will serve as a landmark for the Kennedy Town community and for Hong Kong.
This project has demonstrated excellent time management and delivery due to the close working relationship and effective communication between Paul Y Construction, MTR Corporation and Farrells, the design architect. This teamwork was integral to the project’s success.
The NEC Awards recognise excellence in project delivery and showcase examples of good practice through collaboration from across the world. The robust judging criteria seek to identify innovative projects and organisations that demonstrate successful cooperation and have worked in the spirit of mutual trust.
Farrells 25th Anniversary Exhibition at The Peak extended to 30 June
Due to an overwhlemingly positive reception, and with the generous support of the Peak Tramway Company, we are pleased to announce the extension of Urban Dialogue at The Peak Tower until 30 June 2016.
The National Trust visit Farrells on their Postmodern London walking tour
Saturday 30th April saw Farrells postmodernist mavericks play host to the final stop of a National Trust tour of Postmodern London. Arriving at Farrells Hatton St office on Saturday afternoon, the extraordinary turnout of members were met by our very own Adam Nathaniel Furman and Farrells Partner Gary Young, who stood amongst a kaleidoscope of models on display that ranged from MI6, Fenchurch St, and even an original egg cup that once perched atop TVAM, and who took them on a more Farrell-esque walk through postmodern London. Gary began by introducing the 48 strong audience to projects old and new, from the concept behind the jigsaw puzzle that makes up the Comyn Ching Triangle, to the celebrity of MI6. It was then Adam’s turn to take to the mic; one of Adam's responsibilities since joining Farrells has been to raise awareness about, and seek the recognition and protection of some of London's most notable postmodernist works, Comyn Ching being one of them. The fight to protect such landmarks encapsulated the tone of his talk to the Trust that afternoon, and with unequivocal passion Adam rounded off the tour by bringing to the fore the importance of protecting some of our built environment’s most characterful gems. To that end, we hope that the National Trust visit was as enjoyable to be a part of as it was for us to host, and that, perhaps, it may also symbolise an even greater collective effort to embrace and recognise London’s fascinating and fantastic postmodern heritage.
Farrells propose "Nam Tong" land supply alternative for Hong Kong
Farrells have proposed a new town for Hong Kong called “Nam Tong” (藍塘) as an alternative to the proposed “East Lantau Metropolis”.
The East Lantau Metropolis, conceived by the Lantau Development Advisory Committee (LanDAC), is a proposal to house 400,000 to 700,000 people on islands between Hong Kong Island and Lantau Island. The East Lantau Metropolis is an “all-or-nothing” approach that requires expensive upfront investment in long-distance transport links. It would negatively impact the environment of Lantau’s south coast and the outlying islands.
Farrells have identified an alternative that allows for incremental growth and enhances the existing urban context. Nam Tong is a conceptual new town at the eastern end of the urban area, on the site of the current Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate, the Area 137 Fill Bank, as well as an area of newly-reclaimed land outside Victoria Harbour.
We propose a new MTR harbour crossing to “unlock” this land. Nam Tong is designed as a transit-oriented community. It will be well-connected to both Hong Kong Island as well as to East Kowloon, through an extension of the Kwun Tong Line, which will take over the Lohas Park spur line.
Speaking to the Legislative Council Panel on Development, Sir Terry Farrell commented:
“[Nam Tong] is natural growth, it is much more phasable, and it is comparatively less expensive. When fully built out, it will be the same scale [as the East Lantau Metropolis] – 500,000 residents with workplaces and leisure.
We cannot predict the future with certainty. Megaprojects often fail, as all eggs are in one basket. We should explore alternatives that are incremental, easily phased, flexible, adaptive, and build on existing plans.”
The Chief Executive's 2016 Policy Address included a proposal to develop the Tseung Kwan O Area 137 Fill Bank for residential use. We believe that the wider district, largely zoned for industry, holds great potential for holistic, larger-scale development as a balanced, modern new town.
Nam Tong builds on other existing plans. It ties in with the proposed Route 6 highway (Central Kowloon Route-Cross Bay Link), and the MTR’s planned East Kowloon and North Island lines. Residents would enjoy quick, direct MTR rides to major centres of employment.
Exhibition at The Fringe Club opens
Two exhibitions in Hong Kong have opened to celebrate the company's 25th anniversary in the city.
At the Fringe Club, URBAN DIALOGUE reveals Farrells’ profound understanding of how cities work and how they can be improved, each project responding to the different considerations and the unique circumstances inherent to each location. The exhibition showcases half a century of Farrells projects in relation to geography, culture and history.
The opening ceremony on 14 April commenced with a speech from Hong Kong’s Chief Secretary for Administration, Mrs Carrie Lam. Mrs Lam credited Farrells’ work in Hong Kong over the past 25 years;
“During its 25 years of business in Hong Kong, Farrells has created iconic yet people focused architectural landmarks that blend into our cityscape seamlessly. These include the Peak Tower, the Kowloon Station, the new Kennedy Town MTR Station and the spaceship like Kennedy Town Swimming Pool, to name just a few for a glimpse of the breadth and depth of the amazing works of Farrells.”
The exhibition at the Fringe Club is open daily (Monday-Saturday) from 12:00-22:00 until 30 April. The Fringe Club is located at 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, Hong Kong.
Exhibition at The Peak Tower opens
Two exhibitions in Hong Kong, held under the banner of URBAN DIALOGUE, have opened to celebrate Farrells' 25th anniversary in the city. One of them, "Icons by Farrells", is being held at The Peak Tower – Farrells' first commission in Hong Kong.
Having celebrated 50 years in practice in London in 2015, this year marks a quarter century in practice in Hong Kong. Taking the opportunity to explore Farrells contribution to the Hong Kong landscape as well as the opportunity to dig deeper into the issues and themes running through the built environment debate in the city, our URBAN DIALOGUE celebrations kicked off with a tour of The Peak.
The exhibition at The Peak Tower is open 10:00-23:00 weekdays, and 8:00-23:00 on weekends and public holidays. It runs until 30 April.
Planning in London Issue 97 April- June 2016
Sir Terry Farrell's latest column 'Shortening the Food Chain' is out now in the April-June 2016 Issue of Planning in London magazine.
Read Terry's latest column here.
Green Capital – Green Infrastructure for a future city.
The Cross River Partnership have released a brochure Green Capital- Green Infrastructure for a Future City and a short film on their Greening the BIDs programme which supports BIDs and the wider business community to deliver Green Infrastructure projects in the urban realm.
Sir Terry Farrell hopes that it will "inspire others to emulate their achievements."
URBAN DIALOGUE by Farrells
To celebrate our 25th anniversary in Hong Kong, a dual exhibition and a series of events will be held in April.
The Fringe Club - G/F, 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, Hong Kong
15-30 /4 12:00-20:00 (Mon -Sat)
Curator’s Tours - 23, 30 /4 (Sat) 14:00
The Peak Tower, Shop 101, Level 1, Hong Kong
15-30 /4 10:00-23:00 (Mon - Fri)
08:00 -23:00 (Sat, Sun & Public Holidays)
FORUM - CITY MAKING IN THE 21ST CENTURY*
The Fringe Club - G/F, 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, Hong Kong
19 /4 (Tue) 18:30 - 20:30
WORKSHOP - SHAPING HONG KONG*
The Fringe Club - 1/F, 2 Lower Albert Road, Central, Hong Kong
16 /4 (Sat) 14:00 - 16:00
LECTURE - THE CITY AS A TANGLED BANK by Sir Terry Farrell*
Room LT2, Yasumoto International Academic Park (YIA Building)
Chinese University of Hong Kong
7/4 (Thu) 18:00
* RSVP is required. For enquiries or registration, please contact us at
[email protected] / 852 2523 0183
Mr London – Terry Farrell
Newcastle City Council honours Sir Terry Farrell with Freedom of the City
Newcastle City Council has awarded Sir Terry Farrell with its highest honour.
Other notable recipients of the Freedom of the City include footballer Alan Shearer, former United States President Jimmy Carter, rugby union player Jonny Wilkinson and Burmese pro-democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi. The names of all the honorary freemen are carved into the walls of the Banqueting Hall in the Civic Centre.
During a long career Sir Terry Farrell has built major buildings and masterplans all over the world but his career began in Newcastle. He grew up in Grange Estate Gosforth, went to St. Charles Gosforth and then on to St. Cuthbert’s School in Benwell and studied architecture at Newcastle University.
Among his best known work is the MI6 building in London, Beijing South High Speed station, Incheon Airport and KK100, the tallest building built by a British architect. Sir Terry’s work in Newcastle includes the masterplan for Newcastle Quayside, the award-winning International Centre for Life and the Great North Museum, as well as a wider masterplan linking the quayside with the cultural quarter.
Discussions are now underway with Newcastle University to provide a permanent home for Sir Terry’s archive, which has been described by the V & A as the ‘most comprehensive archive of a living architect.’
Farrells and BuroHappold win London Planning Award
Farrells and Buro Happold won Best Conceptual Project for ‘Bridging East London: Unlocking housing capacity with low-level river crossings’ at the London Planning Awards
Organised by London First, contenders were nominated by the property sector with the final shortlist judged by a panel of experts from the Greater London Authority, London First, the Royal Town Planning Institute and London councils.
The awards were presented by Boris Johnson, who said “Congratulations to the winners who are leading the way in innovative design to ensure we are creating the homes, offices, open spaces and cultural venues that are not only attractive to our communities, but will stand the test of time.”
Read about ‘Bridging East London: Unlocking housing capacity with low-level river crossings’ here.
Low-level crossings proposal featured in Homes & Property
Farrells proposal for low-level river crossings to unlock housing capacity in East London has been featured on the front page of Evening Standard's Homes & Property.
The proposals are for new foot and cycle Thames crossings mixed with more substantial new bridges for traffic.
Several locations have been proposed on three stretches of the river. All of the bridges have rising centre sections like Tower Bridge. There is potential for 47,000 homes within a mile and a quarter of the Thamesmead/Barking bridge, adds Farrells.
Read the full article here.
New Rules for a Denser London - article by Terry farrell in Planning in London journal
Sir Terry Farrell’s likeness was featured on the cover of the most recent issue of Planning in London magazine.
The cartoon relates to his regular ‘Shaping London’ column, which kick starts our campaign for a review of daylight / sunlight rules as we look to increase densities in London.
Read Terry’s full Planning in London column on daylight / sunlight rules here.
First skyscraper rises in Cambodia
Vattanac Capital has stood proudly as Cambodia’s first skyscraper since 2014. Located near the railway station in an emerging financial district, this mixed-use development comprises a 38-storey, 187.3 metre tower housing Grade A office space and a luxury hotel with 148 rooms sitting atop a shopping mall podium. Tower 2 has been designed as a life style cube which has a cinema, fitness, forecourt and medical floor.
The tower bears a graceful, fluid form that is firmly rooted in local culture. The complex unites a plethora of different uses into one cohesive, functional urban quarter, fostering the same degree of vitality and convenience as Phnom Penh’s vibrant older districts.
The form of the complex resembles a dragon of traditional lore, symbolising good luck and prosperity. According to mythology the Dragon Kings live in “crystal palaces”. The façade, fittingly, is formed by scale-like glass panelling which creeps up the dragon’s back, all the way to the tower’s peak. The sum of this marriage between modern architecture and traditional references, with deference to the local environment, is a dynamic building that literally appears poised to leap into a new era of prosperity.
Merry Christmas from Farrells
Farrells Appointed for HS2 East Midlands Hub
Farrells, the architect-planners who have previously drawn up proposals for the HS2 interchanges at Crewe and Old Oak Common, have completed a strategic study setting out key design principles for a new hub station in the East Midlands for HS2 phase 2.
The objective of this new hub will be to maximise the economic growth potential for the East Midlands, linking the station with surrounding areas and cities.
Commissioned by East Midlands Councils, and with engineering support from Peter Brett Associates, the report sets out a world class level of ambition for the station design, and guides future HS2 driven growth.
Infrastructure partner at Farrells, Neil Bennett said:
“We are delighted to have won this commission and continue to bring our knowledge and experience of designing high speed stations throughout the world back to the UK.”
Planning approval granted for Valentines House, Ilford
U + I have been awarded planning consent to transform and extend Valentines House; an office building which will be developed for residential led mixed-use and designed by Farrells. Located near Ilford station, the development will be even better connected when Crossrail services start in 2018. The scheme is the first in the London Borough of Redbridge where an existing office building is being converted to residential use under permitted development rights.
The design includes a complete change to the façade, with a four storey extension for additional residential space. A total of 122 high quality residential apartments for the private rental sector will be built with a rooftop landscaped area at first floor level for residents. The new 11 and 9 storey blocks will be sustainable buildings, constructed in high quality materials. Single storey ground floor extensions will provide retail space, whilst new public realm will create an enhanced environment for pedestrians. A new Crossrail ticket station on the ground floor will provide convenience for residents and drive footfall to the ground floor retail space.
Farrells unique design for Valentines House responds to the existing structure of the building, and is largely influenced by the local history of the area. Materials have been selected to represent a historically famous local business, ‘Ilford Photo’ founded in 1879, who were manufacturers of black and white photographic films, paper and chemicals. This can be seen most prominently through a black and white building façade. A yellow colour band has also been introduced to the fascia of the retail units - a colour that was part of the original Ilford Photo logo.
“Energising the Northern Powerhouse” - Farrells vision for Northern Gateway HS2 hub at Crewe is unveiled
Farrells vision for a Northern Gateway around a new HS2 hub station at Crewe has been released following the Chancellor’s announcement that HS2 will arrive there six years early, in 2027.
On the day that the government have announced accelerated delivery of HS2, adopting Farrells previous proposals for a HS2 hub station at Crewe, the architect planners have released an ambitious new vision for the town. The proposals, developed for Cheshire East Council, build on Crewe’s long tradition of connectivity through rail, whilst enabling its future growth within a vibrant ‘Northern Gateway’ of constellation towns linked together by excellent transport connections.
The Chancellor’s announcement brings all the benefits of HS2 to the north west, 6 years earlier than planned. Farrells growth and transport vision is for Crewe to continue and grow its role as a vital hub within the north west of England, connecting the Northern Powerhouse and Midlands Engine growth areas. The study shows that within the Northern Gateway – spanning Cheshire through Stoke to north Staffordshire and Shropshire – there is the potential for over 120,000 jobs and 100,000 homes, all generated by an HS2 hub station.
Farrells have a unique and unparalleled track record in planning and designing world-class, high speed rail hubs. In December 2012, the longest high-speed railway line in the world was opened in China which is bookended by Farrells stations in Beijing and Guangzhou - two of the largest in the world.
Sir Terry Farrell, Principal, and Neil Bennett, Rail and Infrastructure Partner at Farrells are available for interview.
TFP Farrells win international design competition for winland in Xiamen
TFP Farrells have won an international design competition, organised by Winland Group, for the Xiamen Cross Strait Financial Centre in an emerging CBD district in Xiamen. Under the 12th Five-Year Plan, this proposal will form an integral part of a new financial centre. From its position on the eastern coast of Xiamen Island the development will offer panoramic views of Taiwan and Kinmen Island.
The design concept illustrates the importance of Xiamen as a gateway between China and Taiwan. TFP Farrells Director Stefan Krummeck said: “Our design provides a dramatic visual impact, ensuring the breathtaking view of the coast of China is maximised.”
This ambitious scheme for Winland Group comprises four super high-rise towers: office buildings, a serviced apartment tower, a 5-star hotel and retail space with a total GFA of 500,000 m2. The iconic gateway towers form the centrepiece of the ensemble. The ground level connects to Huandao Road and offers direct access to a future metro entrance.
As the pioneer project of an emerging financial district, the gateway towers symbolise the significance of openness and cooperation. The floating hotel at the top creates the ‘GATE’, a form that offers dual advantages of height and landscape value as well as an architecturally striking new landmark befitting up-and-coming Xiamen.
The building features high speed elevators which will whisk guests to the spacious sky lobby at the 150m level. Stunning 360-degree views from the sky lobby, rooftop viewing deck and infinity pool will offer guests unprecedented vistas of Kinmen Island and city of Xiamen. The development will serve as an urban beacon to surrounding areas and reflects the contemporary side of Xiamen City.
Placemaking in Kennedy Town
Building an MTR line in Hong Kong is a unique challenge. The extension of the Island Line to the Western District was a huge construction project in one of the most densely populated urban environments on earth. In planning and designing Kennedy Town Station, an urban design approach was essential as the scope of the project extended far beyond the station itself.
Kennedy Town is one of the oldest districts of Hong Kong. In 1857 the colonial government formally expanded the boundary of Victoria City, embracing a new Western District. The area comprises, from east to west, the neighbourhoods of Sai Ying Pun, Shek Tong Tsui, and Kennedy Town.
Hong Kong evolved dramatically in the years following World War II. The population ballooned with technological innovations like the rise of the automobile and the development of high-rise building technology. The first Mass Transit Railway (MTR) line opened in 1979, offering a high-speed, high-capacity link between Central and Kowloon.
C20 supports listing of early Farrell PoMo building
C20 Society is supporting an application to spot list 69 Leadenhall, also known as Landmark House and 76 Fenchurch Street, which is one of Terry Farrell’s major early post-modernist buildings, dating from 1987. The building is currently threatened by a consented planning application to alter its distinctive facades and remove both its feature entrances, harming its integrity and special architectural significance.
With the loss of other important early works such as Clifton Nurseries and the TV-AM building, with its jaunty egg-cups, it is now one of only a few buildings from the 1980s which show Farrell’s influential contribution to British architecture. Timothy Brittain-Catlin, C20 trustee and Reader in Architecture at Kent School of Architecture, describes it as ‘a seminal building in the history of British post-modern architecture, designed by the architect who played the leading role in the aesthetic, practical and theoretical formation of it.’
Letters written in support of protecting the building include those from Jonathan Glancey, Hugh Pearman and architects Charles Holland of Ordinary Architecture Limited and David Knight of DK-CM.
Read the full story here.
Putting Soul in the City
A bold new essay on the role of artists was launched at an Open Forum organised by Beam in Wakefield on 16 October.
Graham Henderson’s essay Putting Soul in the City: Towards a Manifesto, is part of a new initiative aimed at bringing fresh perspective and impetus to the promotion of the role of artists and the arts in place-making. The essay places this role at the very centre of the planning, design, and revitalisation of ‘place’ - not at their edges, nor as an afterthought. It also centralises the role of individual citizens and communities. It calls for a ‘new Manifesto’ for ‘public art’ - any creative intervention in or affecting public space.
The ‘new Manifesto’ initiative has emerged from the Farrell Review of Architecture and the Built Environment 2014 and has been led by Robert Powell, Associate Director of Beam and a member of Sir Terry Farrell’s expert panel, in close collaboration with Farrells and with strong support from a range of artists and other built environment and cultural professionals. It has now been adopted as part of the Place Alliance - a broad federation of those interested in place-making.
A new ‘Manifesto for the Public Arts’ is currently in preparation, along with further events and an action plan.
Read the full essay here.
Farrells at China Design Week
Farrells will exhibit at the inaugural China Design Week, taking place at Compressor House at the Royal Albert Dock next week; a new international event bringing together the best of the East and the West within design, innovation and technology.
Farrells will be leading a discussion on the afternoon of Tuesday 20th October, with 2 insightful talks on '21st Century City Making - From London to Shanghai'. Talking about Farrells work in the Royal Albert Dock and the Shanghai Shipyard Pudong, Peter Barbalov will speak about two office-based projects and the lessons learnt for design process and urban regeneration.
Laura Mazzeo will also tell the story of two design journeys from Europe to Asia and back again, highlighting Farrells expertise in railway projects and cultural masterplans and the benefits of sharing knowledge between London and Hong Kong.
The talks will be followed by a Q & A session. Register for your free place now.
Please contact [email protected] if you would like further details.
How to Create a Better London
Laura Mazzeo, Associate at Farrells, sat on the panel this week in a debate chaired by Rowan Moore, that focused on "How to Create a Better London". The event was organised by Deloitte and hosted by British Land on the 15th floor of the Leadenhall building.
Amongst other notable figures, the panel included, Graham Morrison, Allies and Morrison; Mick Mulhern, Old Oak and Park Royal Development Corporation; Patricia Brown, Centre for London; Jean Marc Vandevivere, Head of Residential at British Land and Colin Wilson and Justin Carr from the GLA.
Topics brought to the forefront of discussion within the lively debate included the importance to create certainty: having a vision backed by political leadership, the ability to engage with the community and a planning framework. Placemaking was also widely discussed; with the development of Earls Court and its 21st century high street connecting existing and new highlighted as a leading example in the capital.
Laura Mazzeo discussed the social benefits that the vertical city around transport hubs could bring in addition to activities at street level, as well as the need to find new models to retain industrial uses in metropolitan areas.
Many of the views in the Farrell Review were also widely supported in the debate; the need for more pro-active planning; strong stewardship and the need for long term thinking around infrastructure.
London First and Savills have launched ‘Redefining Density’ – the latest in a series of reports identifying ways in which we can solve the capital’s housing crisis.
The report, released last month, argues that London is actually not a dense city, compared with other major cities such as Paris and Madrid and examines the ways in which London can make best use of city land to build more homes, as we try to accommodate a rising population.
To launch this latest report, an event was held at Savills office on Margaret Street, to further discuss how we might reimagine housing density in London, reflecting on questions raised in the report. Nigel Bidwell, a partner at Farrells, sat on the panel for the event, alongside Alan Benson, GLA; Richard Cook, Lendlease; John Dickie, London First and Susan Emmett, Savills.
Nigel Bidwell spoke about how good design can deliver higher densities, the current shortfalls in measuring and understanding density and the role that suburban and urban centres and their social infrastructure have to play in London’s wider need for housing.
Farrells also contributed their thoughts and research to the official ‘Redefining Density’ report, which can be viewed in full here.
Image sourced from cover of London First and Saville's 'Redefining Density' Report.
Farrells Awarded Planning for New ECO House
Farrells have been awarded planning consent for a new rural eco house in Goudhurst, Kent.
The eco house design met the exceptional architectural quality and innovation criteria required by Paragraph 55 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), providing special circumstances for a new dwelling to be built in the countryside. There have been as few as 100 approvals since the "Country House" clause was created in 1997, and this is believed to be the first for an eco house.
Located on the edge of the Kent village of Goudhurst, existing disused farm sheds on the site will be replaced by the proposed 5 bed family home. The low impact house is stepped and sunk into the sloping site, making it appear as single storey in views across the High Weald area, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
The full press release and high resolution images can be downloaded here.
New London Quarterly - Top Of Their Game
Farrells were interviewed by New London Quarterly for the Top Of Their Game feature. The interview discussed the future of the practice and how we are preparing the ground for a new succession plan. The full article can be downloaded here.
Sir Terry Farrell reveals his vision for London in Estates Gazette
At MIPIM 2015 Sir Terry Farrell revealed his new vision for a greener, better-connected capital in Estates Gazette's London Investor Guide. The full supplenent can be downloaded here.
New designs show how Gatwick will be the world’s most efficient two-runway airport
An expanded Gatwick would be the world’s most efficient two-runway airport - flexible and responsive to meet the changing needs of passengers and airlines - as new images and an animation produced by Sir Terry Farrell released today show.
The airport will operate to reflect changing trends in passenger travel and the plans demonstrate how queues will be eliminated, passenger transit through the airport will be sped up, and aircraft turn-around will match the quickest in the world.
The full press release can be downloaded here.
SIR TERRY FARRELL BECOMES A TRUSTEE of THE TREES AND DESIGN ACTION GROUP TRUST.
The Trees and Design Action Group (TDAG) and Farrells are pleased to announce that Sir Terry Farrell is now a trustee of the TDAG Trust alongside Martin Kelly, Chair; Dr Mark Johnston, co-author of Trees in Towns II and Keith Sacre, Sales Director at Barcham Trees and lead author of the recent BS8545: Trees: from nursery to independence in the landscape – recommendations
TDAG was formed early in 2007 following a round table discussion convened by Martin Kelly, then director at Lovejoy London and now land planning director at Capita Property and Infrastructure and became a charitable trust in 2013. Over the last eight years TDAG has grown in membership and influence. It is recognised as a pioneering group of individuals, professionals and organisations from both the public and private sector who have come together to increase awareness of the role of trees in the built environment throughout the UK.
The full press release can be downloaded here.
FARRELLS APPOINTED TO DESIGN NEW CLUB FOR EMERGENCY SERVICES IN HONG KONG
Farrells Hong Kong office have been appointed to design a new recreational club for the emergency services in Hong Kong. This exciting scheme is part of a million-dollar infrastructure project for the new Shatin to Central Link in Kowloon and Hong Kong Island. The site, in Causeway Bay, is one of Hong Kong harbour's most prominent locations and the new Club will include a wide variety of facilities including sports and recreation amenities, primarily for the police.
The press pack with full press release and high res images can be downloaded here.
Farrells Win Planning Award for Economic Growth in London
At the inaugural Planning Awards, Farrells took home the award for Planning for Economic Growth for their work on the Royal Albert Dock masterplan. The practice was also highly commended in the Planning for Housing Growth category for their North West Bicester project.
The press pack with full press release and images can be downloaded here.
Farrells awarded planning permission for Marlow office retrofit and refurbishment
Concept Business Group Ltd has been awarded planning permission for the Farrells designed retrofit and refurbishment of Volvo House, a 1980s office building in Marlow which was originally the HQ of car manufacturers Volvo. Farrells have been appointed to carry out the design and transformation of the building and surrounding landscape.
The full press release can be downloaded here.
Farrells wins Future Project Award at MIPIM UK
Farrells have won the MIPIM UK Future Project Award for their work on the Earls Court Masterplan in London. The award was announced last night at a gala at the very first MIPIM UK that is taking place in London this week.
The full list of winners for all categories can be found here.
Sir Terry wins Blueprint Award for Critical Thinking
Today Sir Terry Farrell was awarded the Blueprint Magazine Award for Critical Thinking. Voted for by the public, Sir Terry was nominated for this award for the recently published Farrell Review - a broad and independent review of architecture and the built environment which sought contributions from government, institutions, agencies, industry and the public. Making over 60 recommendations, the Review is a call to action – for policy makers, local government and industry.
To read more about the Sir Terry's award and all other winners, click here.
QPR launch Old Oak Common Consultation
Queens Park Rangers Football Club has today announced the launch of a public consultation for a new football stadium and 24,000 new homes within the Farrells designed Old Oak Common materplan in West London.
Follow this link to see the news announcement on the BBC News London website.
Gatwick response to Airports Commission announcement on Thames Estuary airport
This morning the Airports Commission announced that the Thames Estuary Airport has been ruled out of the shortlist.
Responding to the announcement, Gatwick Chief Executive Stuart Wingate said: "This is an important juncture in the aviation debate because now Britain’s choice is clear; expand Gatwick and support genuine competition, lower fares and greater choice for passengers".
Read the full response from Gatwick here.
PLANS FOR LONDON’S NEXT BUSINESS DISTRICT AT ROYAL ALBERT DOCK GIVEN GREEN LIGHT
Plans from Chinese developer ABP and UK development manager Stanhope to transform the Royal Albert Dock into the capital’s next business district, creating up to 20,000 new jobs, have been awarded planning approval by Newham Council.
The 35 acre scheme for businesses from Asia will bring much-needed investment worth £6bn to this part of London and the UK, bolster trade links with Asian markets and attract new companies to set up European HQs.
The media pack, with full press release and images, can be downloaded here.
Planning permission sought to preserve and enhance former Bishopsgate Goodsyard
A planning application for a scheme by London’s most experienced masterplanner, Sir Terry Farrell, to regenerate the 4.2 ha former Bishopsgate Goodsyard has been submitted to the London Boroughs of Hackney and Tower Hamlets.
The media pack, with full press release and images, can be downloaded here.
Eric Pickles backs landscape-led regeneration of the “Thames Estuary Park”
This week Rt Hon Eric Pickles MP, Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government said "It's time to reclaim the Thames and allow London's growth to happen in a sustainable way" at a meeting of the Thames Gateway Local Nature Partnership (TGLNP) chaired by Sir Terry Farrell.
Eric Pickles, a keen birdwathcer and regular visitor to Rainham Marshes, led a discussion with 20 leading figures from the natural and built environment sectors on how to further the aims of the TGLNP and rebrand the area as the Thames Estuary Park.
The media pack, with full press release and images, can be downloaded here.
Farrells shortlisted for 5 WAF Awards
5 Farrells projects have been shortlisted for the World Architecture Festival 2014, including Earls Court, Royal Albert Dock, Gatwick, Qianhai and Z15. The full shortlist can be found on the WAF website here https://www.worldarchitecturefestival.com/
We look forward to presenting these projects at the Festival in Singapore this October.