Text description provided by the architects. In 2007 John McAslan + Partners was commissioned by Land Securities to design a 10-storey mixed use building on a landmark ‘point’ location at the junction of Queen’s Gate and Petty France, London. This significant project comprises a high-value apartment block with 62 apartments, as well as retail on part of the ground floor, with frontages on Buckingham Gate and Petty France. The building, to be completed later this year, will be the private residential component of the client’s associated development scheme nearer to Victoria station.
The architectural language of Wellington House is based on a contemporary interpretation of the conventional mansion block, with the main body of the building defined as a single volume, clad in masonry. The ninth floor is differentiated with zinc and glass cladding, registering as an attic storey against the skyline, the setback minimizing the building’s apparent height. Design development has addressed the fact that the triangular site sits within a conservation area, and careful consideration has been given to the building’s Indian Sandstone façade. Surrounded by buildings of various scales, typologies and historic architectural styles, John McAslan + Partners collaborated with the artist Georgia Russell to develop an incised treatment – inspired by the flight pattern of birds and of wind flow – that brings a distinctive new character to the building and creates a visual focal-point for the immediate area.
The building’s fenestration is essentially ordered, with deliberate variation achieving a balance between an individual window element and the complete ensemble. Projecting masonry fins create an additional visual dynamic, enhanced by the oblique views of the building afforded by the local streetscape. The fins also provide a degree of shading and privacy. Wellington House is essentially freestanding, apart from a single storey car-lift link to the building behind it. As a result, all apartments benefit from good daylight, with those on the top floor enjoying superb views across London. 66% of the apartments are provided with outdoor amenity space (either an inset balcony or via terraces at roof level).
The vertical circulation core is located centrally to provide simple, legible access to all apartments. The vehicle entrance and set down for servicing/refuse collection is located on Petty France. The basement contains parking provision for 19 cars, as well as a cycle space for each apartment.