Central St. Giles is designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop, who invited us to collaborate as executive architects. The mixed-use development by Stanhope and Legal & General includes an office building and over one hundred apartments, with restaurants, shops and cafes at street level. Located east of Centre Point, Central St. Giles will transform a forgotten backwater, currently overrun with traffic. Labelled Gin Lane in the 18th century, the area was notorious for its poverty and violence. The anonymous government offices that subsequently occupied this site further restricted opportunities for local improvements.
This building has now been demolished and construction is underway. Renzo Piano has likened the scheme to an apple, where a bright skin conceals the subtle tones of the flesh. The new offices are arranged around the perimeter of the site and are conceived as a series of linked street façades enclosing a central space. Vivid colours are used to reinforce this, with glazed orange and green ceramic panels providing a contrast to the pale grey and white used internally.