Lendlease bags £120m landmark Covent Garden office job

Aaron Morby 2 years ago

Developer Northwood Investors is pushing ahead with its landmark £120m speculative office scheme in the heart of Covent Garden.

Lendlease has bagged the main contract after a bid race with BAM and McAlpine, while McGee is in for enabling works and Keller the piling for the project, known as The Acre.

The existing Richard Seifert-designed 90 Long Acre building complex consists of a grid of blocks up to 11 storeys high built in the 1980s.

The Acre project will see the existing building on a corner of this scheme replaced with a taller building and other new building infills at gaps between the older blocks, which will also be given a green revamp as part of the project.

Long Acre building plan

Led by development manager Platform, engineer Arup and architect Gensler, the project takes an inside-out approach, prioritising emerging concerns of sustainability, wellness and user-health in real time.

Over 80% of the original structure will retained, to reduce the embodied carbon by half compared with new-build proposals. This will save 4,850 tonnes of CO2, equivalent to the lifetime emissions of nearly 1,000 people.

The building will be all-electric and has been designed to be net zero in operation with energy supplied from fully renewable sources.

Blue roofs for rainwater harvesting will give the building a 50% reduction in water-use, compared to typical building regulations.

The Acre will have openable windows designed to give user control and increase natural light and ventilation.

The Acre is aiming to achieve the best sustainability credentials including targeting an official 4.5* NABERS UK target rating, BREEAM ‘Outstanding’, WELL ‘Platinum’ certification, FitWel 3* and RIBA 2030 embodied carbon targets on completion in 2023.

New atrium to be built at the heart of the office scheme

Simon Gorski, Lendlease Europe’s Managing Director of Construction, said: “90 Long Acre is a landmark office building and this is a huge opportunity to modernise the structure and create a workplace that is fit for a post-Covid world.

“This project builds on our existing relationships with Core-5 and Arup while forging exciting new ones with Northwood Investors, Platform and Gensler.”

Richard Strachan, Northwood senior vice president of Asset Management, said: “We’ve listened to the needs of contemporary business and designed The Acre to be Covent Garden’s greenest and healthiest workplace, reducing embodied and operational carbon and placing employee wellness at its heart.

“This re-imagined Seifert building will have optimised office floorplates of up to 33,000 square feet, which is very rare in this world-class location in the cultural heart of London.”


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