A new higher education facility on a prominent site along Highbury Grove in Islington.
The building, formerly known as Ladbroke House, was constructed in the early 1930s as a purpose-built factory and warehouse for the electric valve firm A.C. Cossor Ltd. In 1966 it became the North West Polytechnic and has remained in educational use ever since. Most recently, it has been occupied by London Metropolitan University. This repurposed former television factory will now become home to a 900-place media-focussed sixth form school, the first of its kind.
The central section of the existing building has been demolished to make way for a new steel framed, triple height studio / theatre space at the heart of the building. The existing floor slabs were found to be significantly uneven and required levelling to provide a serviceable working space for the new classrooms. However, the existing capacity of the slabs meant it was not possible to use a traditional screed. Extensive investigation of the existing build-ups was carried out to see what finishes could be removed to offset the new screed, with a very light weight screed that could be tapered to a thin edge selected.
We provided justification of the existing structure to accommodate the change of use and provided strengthening details to allow the existing Hollow Pot Concrete floor slabs to be modified and retained, avoiding the need for complete demolition and rebuild.