PROJECTS

STUDIO

Google King’s Cross

 

Following their collaboration to design Google’s new campus in California, Heatherwick Studio and BIG were commissioned to create the company’s new headquarters in London. The team’s focus was not just to make special large workspaces but to find an architectural language that could fit into the local community of King’s Cross and an intense urban context.?The studio has a close relationship with King’s Cross which has been its home for more than 15 years and where it is has also designed a new shopping quarter. The area is a fascinating collision of diverse building types and spaces, of massive

railway stations, roads, canals and other infrastructure all lay-ered up to create the most connected point in London. Influenced by these surroundings the team chose to treat the project like a piece of infrastructure too, made from a family of interchangeable el-ements and with a similar quality of flexibility as old industrial buildings which can be re-used in many ways over time.?Rather than a typical office tower the unusual site called for a 330 metre long building; as long as The Shard is tall. To respond to this particularity and local context the main floors of workspace are ex-pressed as a single confident volume, like the nearby train sheds. However, for the project to be inter-esting enough at the ground level,

where it stretches the entire length of a pedestrianized boulevard, the mass is lifted two storeys above the street to allow a family of many different smaller retail build-ings to be built underneath that create variety and fascination at a human scale.?For a company whose fame comes from a virtual world of data this project is part of it engaging in the public physical world in a new way. Internally the workplace, with its triple height ceilings, is designed to bring people together and create connectedness and opportunities for chance encounters. Externally the panoramic sculpted roof garden will give unprecedented views to the city around and at the ground the street will come alive in unexpected ways.

Client

Google, Argent

Location

London, UK

Appointment

2015

Status

Current

Size

650,000sqft

Group Leader

Stuart Wood

Project Leader

May Tang, Craig Miller

Studio team

Jordan Baliff, Gabriel Belli Butler, Adam Brown, Mark Burrows, Ruggero Bruno Chialastri, Jose Cadilhe, Julia Cano, Luis Miguel Samanez Carrillo, Leonardo Colucci, Silvia Daurelio, Danny Dimbleby, Ben Dudek, Andrew Edwards, Thomas Glover, Kong Hoang, Thomas Impiglia, Madhav Kidao, Barbara Lavickova, Nicolas Leguina, Julian Liang, Ivan Linares Quero, Elli Liverakou, Luke Plumbley, Freddie Lomas, Stuart Macalister, Marco Mazzotta, Dimitrije Dica Mileti?, Pippa Murphy, Abigail Portus, Brando Posocco, Eliot Postma, Fernando Poucell, Jeff Powers, Rebeca Ramos, Emmanouil Rentopoulos, Elisa Simonetti, Ken Sheppard, Don Shillingburg, Wendy Smith, May Tang, Ondrej Tichy, German de la Torre, Marcos Velasco, Cong Wang, Junyi Wang, Paul Westwood, Simon Winters, Jorge Xavier Mendez-Caceres

Collaborators

A10, AKTII, Bjarke Ingels Group

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