Location: Clerkenwell, London, UK
Client: NORD Development
Architects: Doone Silver Architects – www.doonesilver.com
Photographer: Matt Bargery
Located in the heart of Clerkenwell, 63 Compton Street is a four-storey apartment building, created for Nord Development. Replacing a 2-storey electrical substation, the scheme adjoins a listed former public house and responds sensitively to the constraints of a conservation area. From the street, the building ‘reads’ as a 3-storey structure; the fourth storey is setback from the street, concealed behind a brick parapet and creating a generous terrace.
The rear of the building is set back from the site boundary by two metres to create space for a ground floor terrace and large south-facing balconies to the upper floor apartments. Four generously proportioned lateral apartments have been created, varying in size from 95m2 to 120m2 , with one apartment per floor, whilst each of the upper apartments has its own private lift access.
The building footprint is highly efficient with a shared access stair and lift. Each apartment comprises a dual aspect open plan living/dining/kitchen space, two bedrooms and two bathrooms. The second floor apartment includes a large sliding door panel in the living room to create a flexible third bedroom/study. Within each apartment the use of an innovative domestic auto-mist sprinkler system has enabled the omission of traditional corridors and thereby provides maximum useable space.
The system also allows entry into the 18 metre long open plan living/dining/kitchen spaces directly from the private lift lobbies. The bedrooms and bathrooms are located on the more private western side away from the lift and stair core and are configured to create flexibility in the second bedroom arrangement, which can include an en-suite shower room.
All three elevations of the building are important to their immediate context with all sides visible from the public realm. For this reason the Janinhoff brick is used throughout, the detailing of which is then manipulated in response to the specific location – the street; the passageway with apartment windows immediately opposite; and the rear podium level garden.