PLP unveils new offices for 1.4m sq ft masterplan in Bankside

PLP Architecture has secured planning approval for revisions to two major commercial buildings on the former Sampson & Ludgate site owned by a consortium comprising developer Native Land, Temasek, HPL and Amcorp Properties.

 The first is a 17-storey building, situated on the corner of Blackfriars Road and Southwark Street, that will provide 221,000 sq ft of sought-after grade A office space. The structure is fronted by a double-height covered plaza, which will connect Blackfriars Road to Bankside via newly re-opened historic railway arches. The project will create a strong visual presence and animate the office ground floor entrance while at the same time increasing permeability towards the site’s important cultural neighbour, Tate Modern.

 The building’s crafted glass-façade reflects Southwark’s industrial architectural character while providing an interesting contrast to the prevalent brick streetscape. The building features generous 13,000 sq ft floorplates and is designed with a flexible layout to accommodate either a single or multiple occupier(s).  A unique stepped amenity space, offering a flexibility of uses, from events and informal meetings to remote desking or co-working, extends along the first floor. A roof terrace and winter gardens will provide occupiers with outdoor breakout space and spectacular views across the Thames and the historic viaduct below.  

 The second building is a smaller 5-storey structure located on the corner of Hopton Street and Southwark Street that engages with the existing scale and façade rhythm of the nearby Alms-houses. The 41,000 sq ft building has been designed with a more intimate aesthetic in mind and features layouts that are ideal for creative and digital SMEs and start-ups. 10,000 sq ft floor plates and 5m floor-to-ceiling heights are designed to suit multiple occupation and co-working. The building will also include shared amenity spaces for occupiers and ground floor retail space.

 Both buildings are designed to respond to the growing demand among starts-ups and corporations for contemporary office space in the Bankside area and are part of a wider trend for companies to opt for the capital’s less traditional business districts where a wider mix of retail, residential, entertainment and F&B is on offer.

 Lee Polisano, President of PLP Architecture, said: “We are delighted to be working with Native Land on this landmark project, for which we have designed the mixed-use masterplan as well as the two unique office buildings. We have drawn on our extensive experience to create the most advanced workplace using smart technology, and carefully designing for social interactions to promote creative collaborations. Moreover, health and wellbeing, as well as culture, are an integral part of the design and workplace strategy.”

 Alasdair Nicholls, Chief Executive of Native Land, said:  “The emphasis for Native Land’s commercial offer at Sampson & Ludgate will be on design, quality, and attention to detail, in a way which is authentic to the established Bankside neighbourhood. We are pleased to be working with PLP Architecture, which has an international track-record of delivering smart, sustainable, people-centred buildings that cater to the needs of the future workforce.”

 The Sampson & Ludgate site was purchased by a consortium comprising Native Land, Temasek, HPL and Amcorp Properties in 2016, with an existing planning permission for 1.4m sq ft of residential, offices, retail, leisure and cultural space.