Channel 4 Television Headquarters
The architectural concept was driven by the decision to conceive the Channel 4 building and the associated housing scheme as a unified perimeter block enclosing a courtyard garden. As a result, the masterplan re-establishes the traditional form of the urban block which is found throughout London. Channel 4’s segment of the complex occupies two sides of the block, joined at the north-west corner by a fully glazed entrance. The remaining two sides are formed by the residential buildings which were developed by Channel 4 as a separate undertaking in order to offset the cost of the development as a whole.
As the majority of Channel 4’s output is made by independent programme makers, there is no need for an elaborate network of studios. In fact, only one studio is required, and is located in the basement with its own access to street level, along with other technical spaces including editing suites, telecine suites, broadcast facilities and video tape library. On the higher of the two basement levels are a cinema for press screenings and perimeter offices equipped with high level windows to introduce daylight. The first three floors above ground accommodate a mix of open plan and cellular office spaces with the maximum amount of external glazing. The top floor contains executive offices and the boardroom, opening onto a terrace overlooking the courtyard.
The building with its soaring glass wall is lively and draws in visitors and passers by. The design is further integrated with the community through its adjoining housing development and shared access to the central gardens.
The accommodation meets the exacting requirements for commercial office space for a building of this type and can be divided into cellular and open plan arrangements as required.
The entrance to the building is clearly defined by a conclave glass wall. The curved ramp leads from the public open space directly to the entrance. The glass wall is flanked on one side by the stack of meeting room, and on the other by the wall climber lifts that provide the main vertical circulation for the building.
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