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Thursday31 July 2014

Nunhead Green community centre by AOC

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Architect to reinstate Victorian terrace housing with contemporary form in south-east London

AOC has won planning permission for a new community centre and 14 homes on Nunhead Green, south-east London.

The project consists of a four-storey corner block of six maisonettes and flats, a terrace of six four-bedroom family homes, a two-storey community centre and a pair of three-bedroom family homes.

Once occupied by a Victorian terrace, the site has housed single-storey council buildings since the 1970s.

AOC was keen to reinstate the terrace housing but in a contemporary form and language that responded to both the varied nature of Nunhead’s building stock and the area’s village character.

AOC's Nunhead Green community centre

Source: Picture Plane

AOC’s Nunhead Green community centre

Model of AOC's Nunhead Green community centre

Source: AOC

Model of AOC’s Nunhead Green community centre

Although the area action plan suggested a five-storey, 28-unit solution, AOC felt this was too large and instead came up with a two, three and four-storey design in a family of different bricks. This includes projecting brick patterns on the community centre’s east facade in response to the patterned brick of the nearby Old Nun’s Head pub.

“The new buildings sample existing elements from the eclectic range of buildings that surround the green and synthesize them to create a contemporary vernacular for Nunhead,” says AOC project director Geoff Shearcroft.

Southwark Council will go ahead with the 307sq m community centre in the spring. Meanwhile, the housing site will be sold to a private developer, which will implement extensive construction details including facade design included in the terms of
the sale.

AOC is also working on Outer London Funded improvements to Nunhead Green itself.

AOC's Nunhead Green community centre

Site plan

 

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Readers' comments (22)

  • FAT lives!

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  • OMG this is awful. Why do people like AOC understand nothing of what has happened in architecture since about 1820? How completely out of time is it possible to be?

    On the other hand, at last we can see where this well-connected and politically savvy young practice, which is inevitably going to get lots of work, is coming from.

    A bad place.

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  • That first visual is just awful!

    Not really sure if the actual building is going to be much better?
    That corner building looks particularly awkward.

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  • Stewie

    The person who dis the CAD on this needs to be shot! How to make a 3D drawing look 2D in the worst possible way.

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  • more like Lard

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  • I don't understand what the article says.

    It says "AOC was keen to reinstate the terrace housing but in a contemporary form and language"

    So why didn't they do that?

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  • I just don't get it. It looks like its been designed with the sole intention of receiving a Carbuncle nomination.

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  • Think you're all being a bit harsh. The CGI is clearly stylised, I'm not at all sure about the turret thing on the community centre but hey, if the alternative is a faceless building-by-numbers block of 'exclusive studio, 1 and 2 bed homes' with 'stunning views' and some pretentious name (take a bow Caravaggio Tower, Old Street) then I'm all for a more low key approach reinstating a traditional rhythm of townhouses and the like.

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  • I think the comparisons to FAT are a little unfair - I think its fair to say that AOC always tend to specify decent materials and their detailing is leaps and bounds above anything FAT have knocked out. So I think we should remain hopeful.

    My feeling about the rendering and the proposal is that it might be trying to attain / allude to something of the 'analog' architecture promoted by Miroslav Sik of ETH fame? Essentially the everyday tradition, with a tweak. Obviously I'm just throwing my opinion out there (which is probably wrong) and even if that reference is partially correct, it may not be right - or the idea interpreted successfully, in this location.

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  • You're waffling, Ralph. The architecture of AOC (like that of the now defunct FAT) is a retrograde cop-out that shows they understand nothing of what has been happening in architecture since about 1830. Which is pretty disastrous: nearly 200 years of which they display total ignorance.

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