Gehry’s first UK housing project frames iconic Battersea Power Station
Homeowners have begun moving in to the first ever UK residential development by the original "starchitect," Frank Gehry. Named Prospect Place, the eye-catching project is defined by a rippling facade that twists and turns to maximize views of the nearby Battersea Power Station.
Prospect Place is part of the £9 billion (roughly US$11 billion) London Battersea Power Station development which has been going on for a long time and involves transforming the massive 42-acre (almost-17-hectare) industrial site, which includes the power station itself, into a new riverside neighborhood.
Gehry's input for this ambitious undertaking comprises two residential buildings so far, both of which he says are partly inspired by traditional bay windows, though this starting point has been twisted into odd angles. The effect looks random, but Gehry's team says it has practical reasons for the design and that it was painstakingly calculated to ensure the maximum number of residents can enjoy views of the nearby power station building (which non-locals might know from the cover of Pink Floyd's Animals album), as well as producing slightly different interiors inside the 308 residences, so that no two homes are identical.
The homes themselves start at around £510,000 ($635,000) and are made up of studio apartments and larger apartments containing between one and three bedrooms, in addition to townhouses with up to four bedrooms. Each features an open layout and access to either a winter garden or terrace.
The interior decor is split into two color palettes: London and LA. The London decor is meant to reflect the historical nature of the development and has an industrial feel, while the LA palette is meant to be more relaxed and has muted wooden finishes (the LA palette is pictured below).
Nearby lies a retail area that's inspired by London's famous Bond Street, as well as a private residents' garden by LDA Design. Additionally, residents will have access to Foster + Partners' upcoming Battersea Roof Gardens, plus other rooftop gardens designed by James Corner, creator of the New York High Line, in collaboration with LDA Design.
Work on the wider Battersea Power Station development is still ongoing but it will be open to the public from September, which includes notable features such as playgrounds, parks, restaurants, and a novel attraction named the Battersea Power Station Chimney Lift, which is an elevator inside one of the power station's chimneys that will transport visitors up to a viewing platform 100 m (328 ft) above the ground.
"I love London," said Gehry in a press release. "It has culture, history and diversity and the buildings we have created at Battersea Power Station are designed to stand artfully on their own amongst all of that, whilst also framing an internationally recognized icon. It is important we create social places for future generations and our goal from the start has been to create a neighborhood that connects into the historic fabric of the city of London but also has its own identity and integrity."
Source: Battersea Power Station