We're excited that our recently completed project 'Green Skies at the LEA' has just been given a 'First Look' write up in the Architects' Journal.
The project is designed for the London Enterprise Academy, a school for 11-16-year-olds in Tower Hamlets, London’s most densely populated borough. The school is a converted office which originally had no outdoor play space, a situation which became increasingly problematic during the Covid pandemic. We were challenged to find a way to provide outdoor recreation on this confined site and hence the Sky Garden was born.
The Sky Garden is conceived as a series of interlinked timber clad tree houses, the bright yellow hyperboloid columns appear as tree trunks with multiple branches supporting the lightweight sky blue canopy above. The zig-zagging boundaries break down the mass and create a series of lookouts and semi-private balconies for students to unwind and enjoy lunchtime bites.
A living plant border adorned with enlarged patterns reminiscent of botanical cellular structures hugs the edges, inviting biodiversity and offering a natural learning hub for students to grow their own plants.
Holt Architecture Director Jonathan Holt said, "This project became a labour of love for us. We were first introduced to the school when working for the Education Funding Agency on delivery of the initial phase of the building’s conversion in 2015. We’d seen the first intake of students grow into and, eventually, out of it and were delighted when its principle, Ashid Ali, approached us for this special project. It encapsulates so many of the values we strive for as a practice and is a testament to the value of design in managing challenging sites."
Head over to the Green Skies at the LEA project page to find out more.