Leake Street and Addington Street, London

Type: Conversion and refurbishment
Value: £4.3m
Duration: 97 weeks

Railway arches conversion in renowned street art area beneath Waterloo Station.

We converted and refurbished eight railway arches beneath Waterloo Station to create retail spaces for food and beverage tenants.

The site – a 23,000 sq ft former car park and storage space – was located next to the famous graffiti tunnel in Waterloo. Much to the delight of tourists and passers-by, the first hoarding we set up during construction became a canvas for many of the area’s street artists.

The project included demolition, groundworks and the installation of new gas, electrical, water and drainage utilities. It also involved structural steelwork, brick repairs, new partitioning and shop fronts, roofing, electrical, lighting and mechanical installations, and automated bollards. To illuminate the space, we installed 456 low energy light fittings.

Preservation of some of the arches’ original features was also part of our work. We retained the bonded warehouse doors, and scaffold boards found inside the arches were used for gabion planter tops. Bricks removed from the formation of new openings were reused for wall repairs; taking elements of the old into the new.

Throughout the development, we considered how to keep the authenticity of the space alive, and ensured the local community were engaged in the project. We collaborated with graffiti artists on the lighting and roller shutter design of the retail spaces; commissioning them for hoardings and tenant premises. We also engaged regularly with residents, holding meetings with community groups and investing in, and hosting events for, the community’s benefit.

Project Director: Nick Hoy

About Nick