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Old August 14th, 2011, 02:42 PM   #2581
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Old August 15th, 2011, 03:34 AM   #2582
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Cameron’s High-Tech Vision Lacks Cheap London Space



“Silicon Roundabout” -- the traffic circle on the edge of the main financial area that’s the hub of the city’s booming technology scene -- have seen home prices rise as much as 48 percent in the last five years, according to Hometrack Inc.

Conversocial Ltd., a startup that advises companies on using social media, was forced out of London’s Soho district two months ago to make way for apartments. It’s still looking for a permanent base.

Sharing the building with other young technology companies including NeverBland, Brave New Talent and Playfire, Conversocial paid annual rent of about 30 pounds ($49) a square foot in an area where rates can be three times as high. “Most of us still haven’t found proper office space,” founder Joshua March said.

London’s biggest concentration of smaller technology and media companies has emerged in the fashionable neighborhoods of Shoreditch, Clerkenwell and Hoxton, close to the City of London financial district. Rising home prices in those areas are prompting developers to turn commercial space into residences, reducing the amount of office space and pushing up rents.

The space shortage is an obstacle to Prime Minister David Cameron’s attempt to turn London into a technology center to rival Silicon Valley and make the city less dependent on financial services. Technology and media companies in central London employ almost 400,000 people and accounted for 11 percent of all commercial-leasing activity in the past five years, according to Cushman & Wakefield LLP, a real-estate broker.

‘Silicon Roundabout’

At the Bezier luxury development overlooking “Silicon Roundabout,” the traffic circle at the center of the booming technology scene, two-bedroom apartments are on sale for about 800,000 pounds. Average prices in the neighboring postcodes have climbed as much as 48 percent since 2006, Hometrack Data Systems Ltd. data show. Expedia Inc. (EXPE), an online travel company, leased two floors of the Angel Building on the edge of Shoreditch last month for more than 40 pounds a square foot.

The lack of affordable space is a problem for companies that rely on hip locations and relaxed, open-plan working environments to woo programmers away from higher-paying financial firms.

“All the attention being heaped on it isn’t necessarily helpful,” Daniel Waterhouse, a partner at venture fund Wellington Partners in London, said of Silicon Roundabout’s increasing prominence as a technology hub.

Playfire, a website that helps game players track their performance, this week moved into offices in Covent Garden, one of London’s most popular shopping districts, after finding that space in Shoreditch almost matched its price of about 34 pounds a square foot for rent and services.

Widening Gap

“Good engineers who have six offers are going to want to be somewhere nice,” founder Kieran O’Neill said. Moving into a peripheral neighborhood like Hackney, in east London, wasn’t an option, he said.

To make things worse, bigger, more established companies are being forced to look for space outside their preferred areas in central London, increasing competition for offices in other parts of the city. The vacancy rate for Grade A space dropped to 3.4 percent in the second quarter from 3.6 percent three months earlier, broker Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. (JLL) estimates.

When it was looking for new premises last year, online fashion retailer Farfetch wanted to keep its rent costs to about 22 pounds a square foot. That yielded mostly run-down, empty spaces with few amenities, marketing director Paul Brine said, with “nice” space closer to 28 pounds.

That’s well below prime rents in the City of London financial district itself, which are about 55 pounds a square foot. Offices in the best locations in the West End cost about 95 pounds, Jones Lang said.

Slow Connections



Squeezed between residential developers and big financial firms, London technology start-ups are having a tougher time than ever finding real estate.

Lower-end space presents another challenge for startups: poor Internet connections.

“Connectivity is a big problem,” Waterhouse said. While many older buildings aren’t yet hooked up to high-speed fiber- optic networks, setting up even conventional broadband connections over copper phone lines can take months in buildings that haven’t been well maintained or renovated, he said.

Landlords are more reluctant to rent space to startups because they’re less likely to sign long-term leases than financial companies or law firms, said David Jackson, a partner at Pilcher Hershman, a real-estate adviser that specializes in advising media and technology companies.

“Some landlords are tied up with their banks and need to show they’re getting good covenants into their buildings,” he said.

‘Lifestyle Choice’



The space crunch is an obstacle to U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron’s efforts to turn London into Europe’s leading technology center and a rival to Silicon Valley, reducing the city’s dependence on financial services.

Relatively few large landlords are building space designed for temporary use, forcing companies to come up with unconventional solutions. TechHub, a flexible work-space on City Road right at Silicon Roundabout, charges 275 pounds a month for a single hot-desk rental, has 75 permanent residents and is sponsored by companies including Google Inc. (GOOG) and Pearson Plc (PSON) in return for access to its community of developers.

“For recruiting, there’s a definite, large benefit to being where all the other startups are, and in an area with bars and cafes and a fun environment,” said Conversocial’s March, who didn’t consider moving into properties such as TechHub because they are more suitable for companies with fewer than 10 people. “Working for a startup is a lifestyle choice, since they can’t always pay much.”

The government is encouraging new ventures to move to other parts of “Tech City,” a four-mile-long zone stretching from Shoreditch to Stratford, the neighborhood at the heart of the 2012 Olympic Games. The giant media center that was built for the event may be turned into a home for startups afterwards.

Central Locations

So far, only the most central part of that vast swathe of London, which includes some of the capital’s most economically deprived areas, has proved attractive to startups.

“Small tech companies need extremely skilled and specialized labor,” making central locations paramount, said Paul Cheshire, a professor of spatial economics at the London School of Economics. Tight planning rules, meanwhile, make the cost of building office space only worth bearing when it can be leased to high-paying tenants like banks, he said.

Ultimately, both startups and landlords may have to adopt more flexible attitudes to get along in one of the world’s most crowded and expensive cities.

“There are some landlords who have understood the need” and others could open up more flexible leases in buildings for which their plans are uncertain, Pilcher Hershman’s Jackson said.
Startups “have to temper their view that they’re going to be the next million-pound company,” he said. “They have to realize that they aren’t the main event.”
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-0...don-space.html
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Old August 15th, 2011, 03:50 PM   #2583
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£63 million project for Barratt London



Work has started on Assael Architecture’s £63 million residential-led development at Osiers Gate in Wandsworth, south London.

The scheme for Barratt London sits on a 0.9ha site by the river Thames and will provide 275 residential units and commercial space in eight new buildings, the largest of which is a 21-storey tower.

Speaking about the project managing director John Assael said: “It is a striking location at the mouth of the Thames, and the move away from heavy industrial buildings will create a vibrant new mixed-use community, while also attracting new visitors.

“Our plans, which embrace environmental sustainability, have been designed to ensure the development is well integrated into the surrounding areas, whilst maximising the outstanding river views from higher storeys.”

The project also includes a new plaza linking the north and south portions of the site, as well as two private squares.
http://www.bdonline.co.uk/news/work-...023133.article
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Old August 15th, 2011, 05:08 PM   #2584
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Old August 15th, 2011, 10:03 PM   #2585
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Central London offices 'in high demand among tech firms'

Technology companies are increasingly seeking central London offices from which to operate - but high demand across the market means there is a shortage of space.

This is according to Bloomberg, which reports that start-ups in particular are keen to take up residence in the centre of the capital, but the growing scarcity of commercial space has forced them to move to other parts of the city.

"Small tech companies need extremely skilled and specialised labour," remarked London School of Economics professor Paul Cheshire, adding that this means centrally-located offices are particularly important.

Even larger companies are finding that central London offices are in high demand, pushing them towards districts located elsewhere and creating more competition in these areas.

This appears to tally with figures from the most recent UK Commercial Market Survey by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, which revealed a rise in requests for Greater London offices during the first quarter of 2011.

Around 43 per cent more surveyors recorded increases in demand rather than falls for this area, while 39 per cent more members saw rises within the central London sector than decreases over the same period.
http://www.mellersh.co.uk/News/Centr...800696179.aspx
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Old August 16th, 2011, 05:48 AM   #2586
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The final design for 25 Churchill Place.

originally posted by jack_jones.





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Old August 17th, 2011, 06:44 AM   #2587
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Thameslink works continue around London Bridge station


Two new entrances will be constructed on Tooley Street and St Thomas Street.

Continuing works by Network Rail in the London Bridge area will mean that London Bridge bus station will be closed to buses and taxis this weekend.

The work, part of the Thameslink Project, means that London Bridge bus station will have to close between 00:01 Saturday 20 August until 05:00 on Monday 22 August.

Buses will call at nearby stops on London Bridge instead. Bus routes affected are numbers 17, 43, 48, 141, 149, N21 and N343.

Revised stopping arrangements will be clearly displayed on posters around the bus station, in local bus stops and on the Transport for London website.

Passengers are advised to allow extra time to complete their journeys.

Taxis will also be unable to serve the rank at London Bridge bus station but passengers will be able to catch taxis from the ranks on Tooley Street located near the entrance to the London Dungeon attraction.

Taxi marshals will be available to assist with any onward journeys between 08:00 and midnight on Saturday 20 August and 08:30 and midnight on Sunday 21 August.

The works this weekend include lifting into place four steel girders which will form part of a new viaduct above Station Approach.

Continuing resurfacing and paving works on Borough High Street are not affected by these station works with local traffic management remaining in place to ensure smooth traffic flow.

Additional work to transform London Bridge bus station will take place later this year with further details being made available near that time.

When the project is complete it will deliver improvements to the rail station, Underground station and bus station.

Borough Viaduct will double the number of tracks heading north from London Bridge, unlocking extra capacity at London Bridge and reducing delays for passengers coming into London from the South East.

http://www.rail.co/2011/08/16/thames...ridge-station/
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Old August 17th, 2011, 07:50 AM   #2588
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Awesome thread. London never ceases to amaze me, can't wait until I get to see the city in person.
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Old August 17th, 2011, 02:46 PM   #2589
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london is just that kinda city u never get enough of it...
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Old August 18th, 2011, 09:56 PM   #2590
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Take-up of central London offices rises in Q2

Demand for central London offices rose during the second quarter, new figures have revealed. Take-up of premises in this part of the capital registered a ten per cent increase compared with the previous three-month period, according to Equipe statistics reported by City AM.

This rise was driven by a 22 per cent leap in demand for West End offices, which included Double Negative's leasing of 160 Portland Place and Google's shift to Central St Giles.

The latter development has 408,000 sq ft of office space, along with retail and residential offerings. Google took 160,000 sq ft in May as part of a strategy to move some of its UK team from its current site in Victoria later this year.

Overall, some 834,000 sq ft of office space was taken up in the second quarter, Equipe said. Other highlights included a sharp rise in the popularity of east central London offices, particularly among companies in the media and technology industries, with Farringdon experiencing growth of 125 per cent and EC1 increasing by 30 per cent.
http://www.mellersh.co.uk/News/Take-...800703429.aspx
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Old August 19th, 2011, 12:16 PM   #2591
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Thames Water begins pipe replacement project near Olympic Park

Thames Water is replacing century-old pipes near the Olympic Park in a bid to reduce leaks and bursts.

The £630,000 project in Waltham Forest, London started last weekend (13 August) and will see the water company lay 1.8km of robust plastic piping in place of 100-year-old cast iron pipes.

As part of the project, which is expected to take around four months, pipes in Lea Bridge Road, Leyton, will initially be replaced before work can be done in other areas.

According to Thames Water, the plastic pipes will significantly reduce the volume of water that is lost through leaks and help to avoid future disruption to services.

Thames Water's head of capital delivery, Lawrence Gosden, said: "The pipe we are replacing is old and leaky. Not only does this waste water, it also inconveniences people when we have to dig up the road and do repairs.

"While we apologise for the inevitable disruption work of this nature causes, replacing old and leaking mains is essential as our water resources come under increasing pressure from climate change and population growth."

There are no planned road closures although traffic management will be in place. Customers whose water supply will be affected will be notified in advance.

In the past five years Thames Water claims to have installed 1,300 miles of new pipe, helping to reduce leakage by 27%.

http://www.edie.net/news/news_story....+Olympic+Park+
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Old August 19th, 2011, 07:42 PM   #2592
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London has busiest hotel pipeline in Europe

London continues to be the European city with the largest number of hotels under development, according to the July 2011 STR Global Construction Pipeline Report.

There are 9,918 rooms planned for London, with 4,506 of them currently under construction.

Across Europe, the total development pipeline comprises 800 hotels (130,260 rooms). After London, cities reporting a significant number of rooms under construction include Istanbul (2,438 rooms), Stockholm (1,706 rooms), Berlin (1,436 rooms) and Manchester (1,431 rooms).
http://www.caterersearch.com/Article...-in-Europe.htm
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Old August 20th, 2011, 06:05 PM   #2593
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Construction Starts On Osiers Gate

Work is about to begin on the next stage of the expansion of the Barratt development pipeline in London, Osiers Gate.

The project is one of the key urban redevelopment sites in the London borough of Wandsworth, and sits between Enterprise Way and the River Wandle, a brownfield plot that has been occupied by 20 light-industrial work sheds. 400 metres to the south is the controversial Ram Brewery site.

The designs from Assael Architecture see a twenty one floor landmark tower, four floors shorter than what originally surfaced during planning consultations, plus an assortment of shorter residential buildings with an average height of nine floors each. Within the scheme will be 275 residential units with the 89 affordable apartments in a self-contained block. There will also be 2,104 square metres of ground floor commercial and residential space, a large 1,404 square metre local health centre.

Landscaped space will sit between the buildings for residents and public alike to enjoy along with a new public plaza. The tower will boast amenity for residents in the form winter gardens on the northern side of the tower.

In expanding their London portfolio, Barratt has kicked off a number of high-rise developments in the past 12 months, including Queensland Road near Emirates Stadium, and a solo residential tower on Alie Street.
http://www.skyscrapernews.com/news.php?ref=2916
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Old August 20th, 2011, 07:35 PM   #2594
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Developments around Croydon.

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Originally Posted by csk View Post
Just a quick photo update of developments in Croydon at the moment, have a look at the Saffron Square thread in the construction forum of photos from there.

Bernard Weatherhill House (New Croydon Council Headquarters)











New 'Hampton by Hilton' hotel:







If you look at the bottom photo above you can also see the new YMCA building that is starting to progress next door to the hotel.

Location of the new Premier Inn Hotel:



Planning permission for the new premier inn was given last week, so hopefully something will start happening soon.
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Old August 26th, 2011, 05:10 AM   #2595
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Not a big project, but something that I nonetheless found interesting

Quote:
Roof Garden Apartment, London by Tonkin Liu with Richard Rogers

Location: London, UK
Type: Residential - Houses
Architects: Tonkin Liu – www.tonkinliu.co.uk
Brief Description: 2-story rooftop extension on Victorian Warehouse
Gross internal area: 260 square metre
Status: Completed
http://architecturelab.net/roof-gard...-rogers-19470/

















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Old August 26th, 2011, 05:22 AM   #2596
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An interesting sustainable building concept that could actually cultivate 1.5 million pounds of fresh produce per year.

Read more: London Farm Tower: Sustainable Skyscraper Could Meet 20 Percent of City’s Food Demand Sustainable London Farm Tower Designed For Vertical Agriculture – Inhabitat - Green Design Will Save the World

Quote:
LONDON FARM TOWER: ULTRA MODERN AGRICULTURE



As urban areas continue to expand, agricultural farmland is diminishing. Of course, this is a natural course for a growing population. But it does not come without issues. As urbanization pushes forward, the demand for food increases combining with a reduction in agricultural land will cause a squeeze on the production of food and could lead to shortages. A solution is needed.



Brandon Martella’s concept for an urban vertical farm in London, England may be the solution. The London Farm Tower is a sustainable building concept on the bank of the famous River Thames. The tower is a mixed use structure, consisting of mostly farming space, residential units, and educational facilities. The farming space is what sets the tower apart from all other structures. Relying on solar power and rain water, the London Farm Tower would supposedly grow 1.5 million pounds of fresh produce a year – that’s enough to feed 20% of London. The perimeter of the tower would also be surrounded by wind turbines, which would produce energy and also contribute to natural ventilation. One of the most interesting parts of the concept is the hydroponics floors. The floors absorb the humid greenhouse air and recycle the condensate water. Gravity then pulls the water down through hydroponics racks, supplying water for the produce.



There are many benefits of a vertical farm in an urban setting such as protection from natural elements including floods, droughts, and insects. Since insects will no longer be a problem, dangerous pesticides won’t be necessary. The reduction of CO2 emissions would also be significant since heavy machinery, like tractors won’t be used. Produce will already be in the city therefore there will be no need for long distance transportation. The elimination of these factors will cause a decrease in the price of the goods. This innovative twist on the farming industry will also create new job opportunities within the city.



Martella’s concept calls for one million cubic feet of agricultural space and 100,000 square feet of residential space. The rest of the tower will be comprised of an art gallery, classrooms, lecture halls, a cafe/market, offices, laboratories, and more.



It is very exciting to see an urban architectural design, which revolves around the future of humanity. A building like the London Farm Tower may be a distant dream at the moment, but the need for it is fast approaching, and the fact that there are people preparing for it, offers some peace of mind.
http://homesandcondosblog.com/home/l...ture-3997.html
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Old August 28th, 2011, 01:15 AM   #2597
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Rocket-Shaped Tower Proposed For Southwark

Fast becoming the playpen for architectural experimentation in London (think the Shard and the Quill amongst others), Southwark could welcome this rocket-shaped tower, which is proposed as an extension to the Russian-owned Menier Chocolate Factory, a theatrical space on Southwark Street.
http://londonist.com/2011/03/rocket-...-southwark.php
can i ask what was the end of that story? does the project approved?
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Old August 28th, 2011, 12:59 PM   #2598
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The London Farm Tower won't happen - there's another building proposed on the site. Architecture students propose vertical farms all the time but that one's definitely the ugliest I've seen!
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Old August 28th, 2011, 05:11 PM   #2599
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That looks quite futuristic and i like eco-friendly buildings
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Old August 28th, 2011, 06:14 PM   #2600
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That looks quite futuristic and i like eco-friendly buildings
Yes, but it doesn't fit at all in that particual area, side by side with the symetrical and/or geometricly-shaped buildings like Tower Bridge or the building of the City Hall.
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