Space Tower – London

Richard Seifert’s Space Tower what a pleasant surprise, as you veer slightly from Kingsway and collide happily with One Kemble Street, first meeting the smaller slab of  Aviation House, then the conjoined concrete cylinder – the perfect none identical twin.

Part Marineville, part Seifert’s modular concrete, and Y shaped supports, a building Derek Meddings would be proud of, anything can happen in the next half hour.

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Predating the current rash of Brutalist models, the child of the 60s never had it better.

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Seifert designed 1 Kemble Street, then called Space House, in a drum shape to reduce the lateral forces that can stress a slab-like block thus reducing the engineering requirements and cutting the cost of construction. 

He originally designed the building to be a proper tower almost twice as high that would have served as a luxury hotel, but objections from Camden Council saw it reduced in height to what has been built today.

Defining the look of 1 Kemble Street are the pre-cast concrete panels that clad the building, much in the same way as Seifert and Oldham Estate approached Centre Point.

Seifert’s signature Y-beams are also highly visible around the base of the building. Each of the modelled concrete cruciform units has a dimension of exactly ten feet in width and height and three feet in depth. Looking closely at the facade clearly reveals the grid of the building.

Skyscraper News

Take a walk, have a look around and around, full of surprises, accidental gentle collisions.

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