The Arts Building
The Arts Building, located in Finsbury Park, London, is an ex-industrial building originally conceived for an industrial art frames. Having acquired the building in early 2019, U+I employed Gibson Thornley to re-imagine the ground and first floor workshops as flexible office and co-working space for the creative industries.
The existing ground floor is a double-height, deep-plan space (1,480sqm GIA) with limited access to natural daylight, making it the perfect space for industrial workshops and spray booths. Now disused, our proposals remove all the redundant kit, ceilings and finishes to reveal a dramatic concrete structure comprising RC columns, downstand beams and blockwork infill. The proposals clean but preserve the existing fabric. Lightweight steel mezzanine structures are inserted within the deep-plan space to create WCs, showers and lockers, along with glass-fronted meeting suites and open-plan gallery spaces for break-out and creative working.
Additional clerestory windows and roof lights are introduced to the space to gain as much natural daylight as possible. New heating and cooling is provided by ceiling mounted exposed services. A new network of track lighting provides a flexible solutions that caters for conventional office requirements through to gallery and studio set-ups. A slim raised access floor contains power and data, enabling the space to evolve and adapt overtime.
The first floor (490sqm GIA), originally providing archive, storage and admin space has also been re-imagined to provide highly serviced open-plan office space. In line with the ground floor, the existing fitout is removed to reveal the building’s structure. Ceiling mounted heating and cooling creates a perimeter free space. The use of track lighting enables a diverse and varied set of lighting solutions to be created from a unified system.
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