Go-ahead for 17-storey hybrid timber building in London

Tuesday 6th April 2021.

TfL has been given the go-ahead to deliver a new net zero carbon office development over Southwark Tube station

Southwark Council has greenlit the plans to build what is set to be one of the most sustainable large-scale office developments in the UK.

The 17-storey hybrid timber building, which has been designed by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, forms part of TfL’s commercial development programme.

It will be rented out on a commercial basis, helping TfL to create sustainable and long term revenue that can be reinvested into the transport network.

The net zero carbon office will create a new landmark for the area, providing around 26,500 sqm of commercial office space alongside more than 230 sqm of retail space on the ground floor.

The development, which is anticipated to be completed in the mid-2020s, will also incorporate more than 2,650 sqm of affordable workspace.

The development has been designed to achieve both BREEAM Outstanding and WELL Platinum certifications, a feat achieved by only one building in the UK to date.

It will also achieve net zero carbon in line with UK Green Building Council and London Energy Transformation Initiative definitions.

Environmental features

At 75m tall with a cross-laminated timber design, the over station development at Southwark would become one of the tallest hybrid timber towers in the UK, allowing it to also achieve embodied carbon reductions of 40%.

The building will be the first designed globally to directly extract waste heat from the Tube station below to help heat it and minimise its energy consumption.

Alongside next-generation air source heat pumps, solar panels and high-performance building materials, the development will achieve a 44% reduction in operational carbon emissions.

Combined with green power purchasing agreements and carbon offsets, the building will achieve net zero at practical completion and enable its tenants to reduce their environmental footprint.

The design of the development makes use of natural ventilation, light-filled spaces and green terraces to support the health and wellbeing of future occupiers.

‘A new landmark for London’

Scott Anderson, head of property development at TfL, said: “It is fantastic that we have been given the go-ahead for our office and retail development above Southwark Tube.

“This world-class development will create a new landmark for this part of London whilst providing vital revenue to support public transport across London.

Sustainability has been a core focus during the development process, alongside meaningful community engagement, to make sure that we build something that will make a long-term, beneficial difference as the city and businesses embark upon a green recovery.

“Down to the construction materials used for the building and the placement of colours, the development’s features have been chosen to reflect and complement the local area and make it something TfL, Southwark and the local community can be proud of.”

Paul Monaghan, founding director at Allford Hall Monaghan Morris, added: “We are delighted that the proposal has received planning approval.

“This project will see the creation of new office and retail spaces – including affordable workspace – and bring new opportunities to the local area.

“The building includes a range of low carbon innovations and aims to achieve the highest environmental standards.

“We look forward to working with TfL on the next stage of the project.”