Third architect to have a crack at Hammersmith tower

TP Bennett has been brought in to redesign a consented RSHP hotel as student flats after covid-19 shattered the tourism industry.

The architect – the third to have a crack at the site beside the A4 in Hammersmith, west London, for the same client – has revealed the first images of the new proposals.

Developer Dominvs ditched original practice Dexter Moren after strong local opposition to the plans for two hotels, one of them 23 storeys high. It pulled a planning application hours before it went to committee in October 2019.

It then hired Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners to redesign the twin hotel scheme and won planning in December. But Dominvs director Jay Ahluwalia said the larger 23-storey hotel was no longer viable because the market had been disrupted by the pandemic.

Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on the hospitality sector

Ivan Harbour

Building Designed revealed last month that the scheme would be redesigned as student flats operated by Scape. It has now emerged that the architect involved is TP Bennett. It is under pressure to prepare a planning application before the end of this month.

The height will be reduced from 76.1m to 67.9m but there will be a “modest” 600sq m increase in floorspace containing approximately 696 student rooms. The hotel would have contained 442 rooms.

The smaller of the two hotels, known as the South Building, will be built out according to RSHP’s consented plans, with work due to start imminently. Ahluwalia told a public consultation meeting they were still ”in discussions with Rogers Stirk Harbour regarding the entire project”.

He added: “With respect to the northern building, the design approach represents an evolution of the approved scheme and continues to reference the parameters established by the approved scheme including layout, massing, dynamic form and materiality.

“While the proposed scheme has an architectural expression and individuality of its own, its references to the approved scheme enable it to continue to read successfully in the round with the South Building as approved.”

>> Also read: Dexter Moren replaced by Rogers Stirk Harbour on unpopular hotel project

>> Also read: Consented RSHP hotel being redesigned as student flats because of covid


Ivan Harbour, senior design partner at Rogers Stirk Harbour & Partners, said: “Covid-19 has had a devastating impact on the hospitality sector and we are aware that the Talgarth Road project is being reviewed in this context. We fully support the opportunity for a better mix that this review could bring to an important location in Hammersmith’s town centre masterplan.”

RSHP, which was based in Hammersmith for years, is working on two other major projects west of the Broadway gyratory.

Gillespies landscape architects remain as the public realm designers.

Previous schemes

>> Also read: Time is running out to save this Aalto-influenced masterpiece in Hammersmith