New London Architecture

50 Fenchurch Street permission shows the City is still ‘open for business’

Thursday 21 May 2020

David Taylor

David Taylor

Editor, NLQ

The City is still open for business.

That was the cry from the backers of 50 Fenchurch Street, the Eric Parry Architects-designed 35 storey tower that won planning permission from the City of London’s first virtual public planning and transportation committee last week.

The City of London’s ability to ensure planning processes continue transparently is applauded, said the scheme’s developers, ‘given its importance in ensuring London’s pre-eminence as a world financial centre’.

Proposed by The Clothworkers’ Company, 50 Fenchurch Street includes a new office building, replacement Livery Hall for The Clothworkers’ Company, public roof garden and winter garden and a significant new public realm situated around a restored Grade I church tower.  The scheme also ‘pioneers extensive urban greening’ in the Square Mile.

The development will provide over 3,400 sq m of new public space, with new public realm of approximately 1,500 sq m area at ground level.  At Level 10 a 360-degree public viewing experience will allow visitors to arrive at a large terrace with vistas over London plus a double-height winter garden which the public can access throughout the year. 50 Fenchurch Street will be the first building of this scale to incorporate extensive vertical landscaping in the City of London.
The proposed scheme will improve two listed buildings. The Grade I listed Tower of All Hallows Staining will be set within a new street level public realm.  The Grade II Lambe’s Chapel Crypt will become publicly accessible.  

The new office building will provide 78,000 sq m of office accommodation (GIA) over 35 storeys. The external design significantly enhances the environmental performance of the façade. The façade includes bespoke ceramic cladding at ground, a seamless glazed podium level and a crafted glass detail on the upper levels. 

Irrespective of Covid-19, the City office development pipeline is very constrained post 2020.  This coincides with an upcoming peak in major lease events between 2023-2027, particularly in the legal sector.  50 Fenchurch Street is set to benefit from this future supply / demand imbalance.  

A new Clothworkers’ Hall will be located largely beneath the new proposed public realm. This will be the seventh Livery Hall for The Clothworkers’ Company, which has called the site home for nearly 500 years.

Eric Parry, Founder and Principal of Eric Parry Architects said:“The commission to redevelop a site of this scale and significance is special in any city but in the historic heart of the City of London it presents a once-in-a-generation opportunity. The design journey of this urban proposition has been one of the most remarkable alignments between commerce, culture and the public realm that I have experienced. The proposal will unite more than 800 years of the City of London’s history with its future in a development that will dramatically improve the experience of the city for all.”
 
The Clothworkers’ Company was founded in 1528 to promote the craft of cloth finishing in the City of London. For nearly 500 years, philanthropy has been woven into the fabric of The Company’s core purpose. The Clothworkers’ Foundation was established in 1977 to be the primary vehicle of charitable giving for The Clothworkers’ Company. Since then, it has awarded capital grants of more than £140 million. Today, its primary aim is to improve the lives of people and communities, particularly those facing disadvantage, deprivation and / or discrimination.  

Clerk to The Clothworkers’ Company, Jocelyn Stuart-Grumbar said: “We are excited about this bold proposal – which provides office accommodation that is especially suited to flexible working environments – and about the evolution of Clothworkers’ Hall. The project is part of our long-term strategy for investing in the future of The Clothworkers’ Company, as well as The Clothworkers’ Foundation, here in the City of London. This scheme offers us the opportunity to unlock our assets, increasing our charitable impact during a period in which this will be so essential.”

 


David Taylor

David Taylor

Editor, NLQ


City of London

#NLACity


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