As a nation we are now obsessed with vintage and updating classic works, be it literature or clothes. Therefore, it stands to reason that in the property world, the appetite for refurbishment is greater than ever before. Indeed, in London in particular, there are many iconic buildings set to undergo an overhaul. This will update these archetypal structures for modern uses, while retaining their integrity.
Here is a roundup of some of the most notable buildings set to be refurbished.
Battersea power station
This is one of the most famous buildings in the world and lies at the heart of Central London. It is now one of the most sought-after developments but its history isn't a smooth one. Construction of the original plant began in the 1930s but protest meant that it wasn't completed until the 1950s.
It is still the tallest brick structure in Europe, despite being closed since the mid-1970s. Over the years there have been plenty of suggestions of how to use the buildings, including a large leisure and retail centre. However, securing funding has proved difficult in the past.
Now the site will be transformed by SP Setia and a host of investors into 3,500 new homes, 1.7 million square feet of office space, hotels, retail and leisure facilities, and two underground stations.
Work began on phase one of the development, named Circus West at Battersea Power Station, in July 2013. This will be a combination of 866 studio, one, two and three bedroom apartments, townhouses and penthouses, offices, shops, leisure and hospitality components. Syndicated finance will support the refurbishment of the Power Station itself, including the reconstruction of the chimneys to the original designs.
See exclusive footage and interviews about Battersea Power Station here
Once the famous In and Out Club, Cambridge House was purchased by Reuben Brothers last year and is set to undergo three years or more of refurbishment to become a single family residence. The American Club and the Green Park Chambers, adjacent to Cambridge House, were also included in the deal.
We have exclusive insight into the building, courtesy of film maker Kevin Murphy, Reuben Brothers and architects Motcomb Estates. The structure was initially constructed between 1756 and 1964 for Sir Charles Wyndham, the Second Earl of Egremont.
Upon entering the property: "The first impression when you enter the front doors is the size and scope of the property. As you make your way through each floor it is understandable that this is going to take quite a bit of time to restore. Plaster litters the floor along with holes in the ceilings, wallpaper peeling, water damage, and original wood floors that have become too brittle to walk on and in some of the rooms the flooring have been partially removed."
It is expected the finished home will be of particular interest to foreign investors, namely from Asia, Russia and the Middle East.
Chinese developers are expected to create a replica of Crystal Palace - once the largest glass structure in the world. At the original site, the new building will be the same size and scale as the first Victorian palace, which was designed for the 1851 Great Exhibition. Shanghai-based ZhongRong group, will be in charge of the project, alongside engineers Arup.
As part of the restoration, the original listed Italian terraces and sculptures will be fully restored. Other parts of the structure will also be preserved, including the underpass, dinosaur models and maze. A new café, visitor centre and restored concert bowl will feature too.
Ni Zhaoxing told the Standard: "The Crystal Palace is celebrated in China as a building of great achievement. My vision is to rebuild it in a way that is faithful to the original building in all its ingenuity, scale and magnificence. I want it to become a new cultural asset for London and a new destination for visitors from around the world."
This iconic building has been lined up to be transformed into a luxury hotel, flats and private members' club. Prime Investors Capital have leased the building for 99 years for GBP 60 million, the Daily Telegraph reported.
Originally built in 2911 to commemorate Queen Victoria's death, it has been occupied by the Cabinet Office since its last refurbishment in 2000. Councillor Robert Davis, Westminster City Council deputy leader, told the newspaper: "This is an exciting application that will return an iconic piece of London’s architecture to its full glory."
IPIN Global will be bringing you footage and interviews in 2014 on both Crystal Palace and Admiralty Arch.
- Thursday 19 December 2013