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Friday25 July 2014

Carbuncle comparisons force retreat over rooftop extension

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Developers hoping to add a new glass and zinc storey to a 1930s block of flats have been forced to scale back their plans – with a little help from BD’s Carbuncle Cup.

Residents fighting proposals to build the modern extension on top of the building on the Northview Estate, in Holloway, north London, cited two past finalists of the annual awards – which honour the worst in contemporary architecture – as part of their case against the development.

They argued that Woodlands Manor in Belfast and the Orion Building in Birmingham have both been blighted by similar rooftop extensions.

Now, it has emerged that the proposals for nine extra units, put forward by developer Walduck 1988 Settlement and drawn up by Blitzgold & Associates architectural services, have been withdrawn and replaced with a scaled-down alternative.

A spokeswoman for Islington Council said that the original application had been withdrawn last week.

“A new application, with a reduction in both the number of new flats and the bulk, height and mass of the one new floor, has just been submitted,” she added.

Christy Lawrance, secretary of Northview Residents’ Association, which is attempting to win the estate local listed status, said she was relieved that the original proposals had been withdrawn, and was awaiting details of the new scheme.

“Obviously we cannot comment without seeing the plans, but I do feel that any sort of rooftop extension would look a bit bulky,” she said.

The applicant and developer were unavailable for comment.

Nominations for this year’s Carbuncle Cup, given in recognition of the most fiendishly ugly building completed in the UK in the past 12 months, must be submitted to bdonline@ubm.com no later than July 22.

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Readers' comments (4)

  • "Blitzgold & Associates architectural services". Perhaps employing an Architect might have proved more successful?

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  • "Perhaps employing an Architect might have proved more successful?"

    Please don't be so arrogant to assume that purely by employing an architect (even a famous one) you are guaranteed good design. The Carbuncle Cup proves this is not the case. Architecture should be judges on its own merits, irrespective of who is involved. Of course BD don't actually show the proposed design, but the precedents are pretty dire.

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  • Typical unhelpful 'them + us' comment from Darren Price. Not that the scheme shown appears to have much, if nay, merit.
    So called 'carbuncles' can be + are produced by 'allsorts'!! With the 'experts' in planning control support to boot.

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  • I think it's pretty poor journalism having an article majoring on the appearance of a building without either the previous or current designs for the extension illustrated. Is there an investigative journalist on the staff who could find these and publish them please?

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