Waugh Thistleton Architects

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Murray Grove 1
Murray Grove 2
Murray Grove 3
Murray Grove 4
Murray Grove 5
Murray Grove 6

Location

Hackney, London

Status

Completed
2009

Client

Telford Homes

Murray Grove is the first urban housing project to be constructed entirely from pre-fabricated solid timber, from the load bearing walls and floor slabs to the stair and lift cores.

APPROACH

The nine-storey tower is built from a tight honeycomb of structural panels, with a timber core providing stability, and inset balconies with structural balustrades to strengthen the outer structural wall.

Zoom image

Section revealing honeycomb structure within the building

DESIGN

Completed within 49 weeks, and delivering 29 fully insulated and soundproof apartments, the project successfully demonstrating CLT to be a financially viable, environmentally sustainable and beautiful replacement for concrete and steel in high-density housing.

Its distinctive pixelated façade, made up 2,500 individual panels in three hues, arranged to capture how the shadows fell on the site of the building, means that the modern, Gerhard Richter’s abstracts - inspired aesthetic fits comfortably into its context. The lightweight wood-pulp cladding avoids adding unnecessary bulk to the tower.

Zoom image

Elevations inspired by Gerhard Richter painting: "Les gris entre ciel et mer du nord"

RESULT

The exemplar project has spearheaded the introduction of CLT in the UK, and pioneered a wider international movement in its use.