LHA Torquay House London W2 Project info

LHA Torquay House

London W2

This new hostel for LHA London promotes community life by placing social spaces and shared facilities (laundry, study area, etc) in the circulation ‘hotspots’, near lifts and stairs, etc. They are designed to animate both the life of the building and its architecture.

The building will have magnificent views over London but has to mitigate the effects of a hostile environment next to the M40; high road noise levels and air pollution. The building design overcomes these onerous site conditions to achieve a sustainability rating of Breeam ‘Excellent’.

It will make a major contribution to Westminster’s Westbourne Green Masterplan for improving the neighbourhood. The ground floor frontage and the modelling and colour in the elevations will enliven the streetscape. Green roofs and accessible roof terraces provide amenity space on this tight urban site.

Off-site fabrication is being used as far as possible to speed up construction. The outer walls are pre-assembled off site, shower rooms, kitchenettes, stairs and furniture are all factory built, and all vertical elements of the structural frame are precast in concrete.

LHA London (formerly the London Hostels Association) is a charity which provides accommodation at reasonable cost for working people and students. Most residents are between the ages of 18 and 30 and stay while they get established. There is strong demand in this user group for rooms which are a step up from conventional student accommodation and 80% are therefore designed as ‘microflats’ with a larger floor area, their own kitchenettes and shower rooms. The other 20% share kitchens.

MJP previously designed Friendship House for the LHA in Southwark, completed in 2004. Within a limited budget, our design has provided a distinctive identity and an attractive living environment which have contributed to its popularity and a constant demand for rooms.