Major net-zero plans for former ITV studios redevelopment
Plans for the office and culture complex have been revealed by developers Mitsubishi Estate and CO-RE and Make Architects. The existing television centre will be demolished to make way for two six and 13 storey buildings fronting the Thames. In addition the space will include offices, cultural venues, green space, cafes and restaurants and will cover 900,000 sq ft in total.
The layered building is designed to form a seamless part of the existing South Bank development, including the National Theatre.
Net-zero mixed use
The redevelopment will target net-zero status with the highest BREEAM and WELL certification. These evidence-based systems are used globally and have environmental standards as well as health and wellbeing at their heart.
In the wake of the pandemic, the scheme will prioritise workers' health with outdoor workspaces and greater access to green spaces, fresh air and natural light. Green spaces will be designed to reduce C02 and boost biodiversity, especially at riverside level and on the rooftop terrace overlooking the Thames.
The biodiverse rooftops will also support wildlife habitats and urban regreening initiatives.
Frank Filskow at Make Architects said that the design team were also targeting a net-carbon building based on an all-electric low energy building concept. This is designed to eliminate the need for fossil fuels through the use of natural ventilation and passive cooling systems.
Minimising embodied carbon
With construction currently contributing over a third of all carbon emissions, minimising embodied carbon is a key consideration of any project. The South Bank development will use an innovative low carbon superstructure to reduce weight.
This central 'tree column' reduces the use of steel in the building while other materials have also been selected to reduce weight and the overall carbon footprint of the building. For example, the finished structure will not be clad in aluminium panels. A series of carbon offsetting schemes will further assist in achieving net-zero goals.
Affordable and innovative
Forty per-cent of the project will be public realm with two new squares and extensive soft landscaping contributing to regreening targets. The public facing ground floor will provide a new arts and culture hub with facilities for immersive events, outdoor screenings and performance spaces on the riverfront.
Alongside digital studios and suites these affordable spaces will provide new jobs and skills for the local economy and complement the artistic offering of the existing South Bank.
The new buildings are deliberately planned to be deferential to the National Theatre and the listed IBM building which stand adjacent to the new development.
Stephen Black at CO-RE said the scheme had been designed to encompass the best of the South Bank and the existing area, while Yuichiro Shioda at Mitsubishi Estate said it was vital that the plans be shared with the South Bank community. He said it was critical that the new building be a place that the public could enjoy while providing the increased footfall that local businesses so desperately needed in the wake of the pandemic.