Celebrating old and new – double recognition for Hackney’s architecture
A flagship new council housing development and the transformation of the 1930s Grade II listed Hackney Town Hall were both recognised as some of the capital’s best architecture as Hackney Council celebrated a double victory at this week’s RIBA London Awards 2018.
The Kings Crescent estate, designed by Henley Halebrown and Karakusevic Carson Architects, was one of just two council housing developments recognised in the awards, which honours the best architecture of all types across London.
The project, which has seen 275 new Council homes and major improvements to the existing homes with new 'winter garden' balconies, was acknowledged for its close engagement with residents during the planning and its innovative approach to regeneration by combining new homes with refurbished buildings.
The refurbishment of Hackney Town Hall, on Mare Street, led by Hawkins Brown architects, also received an award having not just revived an important civic landmark back to its former glory, but updated it for modern use.
The conservation project retained the original art-deco features of the building, while creating new spaces for events, weddings and ceremonies - including two new covered courtyards - to ensure it remains a public building at the heart of the borough’s civic life. The building is also now open for free public tours.
These awards demonstrate our commitment to both maintaining Hackney’s history and heritage, but also creating well-designed high quality new buildings that meet the needs of the borough today.
As with all the new homes we build, at King’s Crescent we’ve worked with high-calibre architects and the local community to create designs that don’t just provide much needed new Council homes but create places where people really want to live. This award shows that building genuinely affordable homes doesn’t have to mean compromising on design.
The recognition for the newly refurbished Town Hall is testament to our efforts to both invest in and preserve an important historic public building and to ensure that future generations of Hackney residents can have pride in this modern, accessible hub of civic life.
These projects will now go forward for the RIBA National Awards to be announced in July. Those collecting national awards will then be considered for the RIBA Stirling Prize.