The Hoxton-based architecture and design firm Studio RHE has revealed a new creative office hub alongside London’s Grand Union Canal, housed in a former vinyl factory.
Named to reflect its erstwhile function, The Gramophone Works was built in the 1920s, in a restrained style drawing on Art Deco. It originally served as a canal loading dock and storage shed. In the 1960s it was repurposed as a record producing factory, which in 1975 acquired the seminal reggae label Trojan Records. Later falling into dilapidation, until RHE’s refurbishment, it was known as the Saga Centre.
Studio RHE has decisively transformed this structure. The facades have been restored and repainted. Internal insulation has been added for thermal efficiency, and single-glazing windows have been replaced by aesthetically matching double-glazing for the same purpose. Numerous roof-lights, as well as a glazed atrium, provide a surfeit of natural light.
Inside, there is 20,000sq ft of office space, intended for small and mid-size creative companies. With LED linear lighting, a patterned feature wall and exposed brickwork, the interior is bright and bold. It also features numerous open areas to encourage social Interaction and the exchange of ideas. Shared areas include a café, cycle storage and several terraces.
The Gramophone Works is the first phase in a larger development, led by Resolution Property, slated to be complete in 2020.
RHE has form when it comes to designing workspaces for the creative industries. Earlier this year it unveiled Republic in east London’s Royal Docks, a complex of affordable space centred around a 10-storey timber atrium. Other recent projects include a private island resort in Les Seychelles and 2015’s Alphabeta office building in Shoreditch.
West London’s Gramophone Works, originally built in the 1920s, has been revitalised for small to medium size creative companies.