The Import Building, London

Designed by: Studio RHE
For client: Trilogy Real Estate Floor area: 2800.00 M² Year of completion: 2017
Submitted for: Large Office of the Year

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View into office floors

About the Project

Anchorage House, now rebranded as the Import building is the first phase of work to complete across the East India Dock site. The post modern 1990’s office block has been completely refreshed, with the insertion of an innovative atrium, fully constructed from lightweight engineered timber. The ground floor has been made public with an array of retail and restaurant spaces.

The timber atrium is the focal point of the building and has been designed to connect the office space with the lower level semi-public spaces. Various break out spaces have been created at ground floor level, which act as overflow areas to the active retail units, bringing activity directly into the heart of the building.

The primary objective was to interjected a new variety of uses to the once almost entirely B1 office used site and to create affordable vibrant workspace with an array of retail, restaurant and amenity spaces to attract the next generation of independent creative and tech businesses in a growing thriving cityscape.

The Import Building has created an attractive, vibrant work and leisure environment, becoming a new neighbourhood in this previously overlooked corner of London’s Docklands.

What’s unique about it

The Import Building has pushed the boundaries of office construction and is pioneering both with the use of the material and within the commercial sector. The atrium was fully erected within the existing building and creates more lettable space for the client by infilling the previous oversized atrium void whilst maintaining a large top lit space.

Structurally engineered timber as the primary material was as natural choice for the design as it was the only material that did not require new groundworks or foundations in the basement as it was lightweight enough to span off of the existing frame.

The process in which the atrium was designed, manufactured and installed have far surpassed other construction methods available. The timber slabs were manufactured into sizes which maximised what could be manhandled without significant lifting required. This was not only important for the installers, but as a result of the lightweight properties of the material, it allowed for larger panels with fewer joints. This significantly lowered the delivery period and floors were erected in almost one a week, minimising the construction period.

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View from ground floor

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Feature origami staircase

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Timber Atrium Detail

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Ground Floor Reception area / Timber Atrium

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Lightbox entrance tunnel

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Building Entrance

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Looking out to the atrium from office floor

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Timber Atrium View

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Ground floor reception area and feature origami staircase

Drone footage of The Import Building's timber atrium

Location of project:
Studio RHE

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