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Social media videos capture construction on hotly-anticipated Heatherwick Studio projects

Two of the most anticipated leisure projects in the pipeline of British design firm Heatherwick Studio have been showcased through new videos on social media.

The first, filmed by videographer John Sturrock, shows construction advancing on the Coal Yards at King’s Cross in London. Two disused Victorian coal drop buildings at the railway station are being transformed into 100,000sq m (1m sq ft) of culture and leisure space.

The structures, which stand apart, are being repaired and connected by a new upper level stitching their two roofs together – a process which can be followed in the video via a timelapse.

When completed in Q2 2018, 65 interior units will be occupied by art galleries, restaurants, bars and retailers – with a focus on fashion and lifestyle. The surrounding coal yard will be transformed into a large public square.

Commenting on the project last year, Heatherwick Studio founder Thomas Heatherwick said: “These two historic structures were never originally designed for people to circulate through. By themselves they would have never made a successful retail destination if we did nothing more than clean them and fill them with shops, because the distance between them is too great to have any social chemistry.

“For this reason, rather than adding an entirely foreign new structure to connect the old buildings, we chose simply to bend and stitch the two roofs together, forming another level of activity underneath, and framing and weather-protecting a dynamic new public space for the city.

A mountain-inspired district in Shanghai

The second video, featuring drone footage captured in July by architecture collective Do Not Settle, reveals how far progress has advanced on Heatherwick Studio’s mountain-inspired Moganshan project in Shanghai.

Called 1000 Trees, the mixed-use project, located next to the city’s M50 arts district, will incorporate a verdant 300,000sq m (3.2 sq ft) complex of buildings, with approximately 1,000 structural columns supporting plants and trees.

“The design has been conceived not as a building but as a piece of topography, taking the form of two tree-covered mountains,” Heatherwick Studio said in a statement.

"Existing planning permission for two conventional shopping mall blocks had been granted for the site, but a huge, boxy building would need to be broken into smaller pieces in order to fit in with the surroundings.

"The integrated planting acts as a natural balancing element and the building’s edges are lowered to minimise the impact where it meets the art district and park, reducing the discernible threshold between them."

Developer Tian An China is overseeing the project.

The work of Heatherwick Studio has inspired several videos popular on social media; such as this one from April showing construction taking place on the honeycomb-like sculptural landmark he is building in Manhattan, New York for the Hudson Yards development.

In June, Berlin-based architecture photographer Laurian Ghinitoiu captured the first images of an elegant new Shanghai theatre designed by Heatherwick Studio and Foster + Partners, which has caught imaginations online with its kinetic moving facade.

Heatherwick Studio  Thomas Heatherwick  design  London  Coal Yards  King's Cross  Shanghai  leisure 
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FEATURE: Movers & Shakers – Thomas Heatherwick

Two of the most anticipated leisure projects in the pipeline of British design firm Heatherwick Studio have been showcased through new videos on social media. The first, filmed by videographer John Sturrock, shows construction advancing on the Coal Yards at King’s Cross in London. Two disused Victorian coal drop buildings at the railway station are being transformed into 100,000sq m (1m sq ft) of culture and leisure space.
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Les Mills International
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