Battersea Power Station has stood empty for a long time awaiting development and approval of plans. Now it has been announced that in October 2013, conversion into new homes will ultimately begin thirty years after the energy station closed. The Battersea Power Station Development Company is behind the venture and responsible for the restoration of the Grade II listed building.
The restoration project will come across millions of pounds and will need to include much major repair work before any renovation is really undertaken. P2001 power station The initial phase of the building work is to fix the external brickwork, clean the towers, do work to the steel frame, repair and replace windows and take down and rebuild the famous chimneys. The chimneys will soon be reconstructed to exactly the same design but utilising the latest safety and structural standards. The theory is to help keep the building looking exactly the same and as a symbol of London.
A special team has been come up with to work on the webpage and the key developer for phase 1 as been announced as Carillion with the architect being Ian Simpson Architects and de Rijke Marsh Morgan. The contract for the first phase is rumoured to be worth around £400 million and will soon be one of the largest in London at the existing time. Carillion is one of the UK’s largest construction firms and already has numerous high profile development schemes udder its belt such as for example Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport and Crossrail and the Royal Liverpool Hospital Project.
The initial phase will soon be known as Circus West and will be to the west side of the Power Station and will include around 850 one, two and three bedroom apartments, also town houses and luxury penthouses. There may also be shops, commercial units, cultural buildings an d community spaces. When completed the complete development will provide a lot more than 3,500 new homes. It will also create a large number of new jobs.
Battersea Power Station is the greatest brick building in Europe and was noted for its Art Deco interior and decor. It is a classic coal-fired power station on the bank of the Thames river, in South-West London. It is really two individual power stations that were built at differing times but within one building. The initial part was built in the 1930’s and the next part 20 years later. They have the same design giving the iconic 4 chimney look. The power station stopped making electric in 1983 and has stood empty ever since. However appearances in a variety of music videos for the Beaatles, Take That and Judas Priest and importantly gracing the cover of Pink Floyd’s 1977 album Animals have made it an original landmark for London.
Prior to the 1930’s it was for the neighborhood councils to provide electric and so there were small power stations to do the job for different districts and the power was useful for a particular factory or industry and excess was sold to the public. However as these were small places the quality and voltage and frequency of the energy differed greatly. In 1925 the Government decided there ought to be one single power grid with uniform standards. The London Power Company was formed from many of small power suppliers.
Their first super power station was built at Battersea while the proximity to the river allowed for quick cooling of the systems and great for delivery of the coal and was in one’s heart of London to provide electric to. There is much opposition on the lands that the building would be an eye-sore so the company introduced a popular architect to design the exterior. When it opened it was the absolute most thermally efficient power station in the world. It was built in 2 stage and by enough time the next phase was completed the UK’s electric supply have been nationalised and ownership was passed to the British Electricity Authority.
There have been numerous redevelopment plans over the years as different companies annexed the site. In 2004 there is a redevelopment project in the pipe line but the existing debts of over £750 million, the necessity that any development must incorporate a £200 million contribution to a proposed extension of the London Underground, the need for a waste transfer plant and cement factory on the banks of the river and the conversation required, made it an unattractive investment and an arduous commercial project.
In 2006 it was bought by an Irish company for £400 million. They initially planned to refurbish the site in to a public venue and housing. The program was granted permission to go ahead but the Irish company’s debts meant the administrations were called in by the end of December 2011 and in July 2012 it was sold to a Malaysian owned consortium for exactly the same amount while the Irish company got it for. Most interested parties simply wanted to demolish the structure and redevelop the land and it has took careful negotiation to locate a firm prepared to undertake the conservation and refurbishment, while developing a commercial venture.