Scheme 3: Squiggles and Splines

This post explains the key decisions behind the design of my latest scheme. The plans below illustrate/label the numbered points on a floor-by-floor basis…

Ground Floor

New plans

1. The office starts off in the second class baths, which will be used as a workshop by the architects.

2. Where there are level changes there will be stairs and a lift; possibly a platform lift if the height is small enough. I want the structure to be as lightweight as possible so installing big lifts wouldn’t really work. I looked into having the whole office on a slight ramp but it would have to be steeper than regulations to link into the different levels of the existing building.

3. I would really like the newly reinstated pool to link to the office somehow, whether this is physically or conceptually. At the moment I am looking at creating different levels in the pool based on the shape of the office above. This would allow for a toddler pool, and a shallow and deeper end in the main pool.

4. On the ground floor the office links in to some of the existing rooms, which originally housed the second class changing rooms. This office space will look out onto the workshop and gets incorporated into the new office by means of the desk. This desk will continue throughout the whole office space, allowing workers to work wherever they would like: out in the open or in a closed room, with a view or looking at a wall, in a noisy space or in a quiet one. I like the flexibility it gives as well as the ability for creative conversation.

5. I would like to look at designing a new entrance to this half of the building as one of my next tasks

6. This edge of the workshop is in a great position to link in to the DLR line next door which has been one of my aims from the beginning. I will also therefore be redesigning this edge of the building. In reality I’d like to redesign all the edges as apart from the front they are all quite ugly!


First Floor

New plans2

1. I wanted the office to link into the existing spaces and infrastructure in Poplar Baths, especially over the pool. This space used to be a stage area for when the baths were used as a theatre, and will now be re-purposed for use as an office.

2. I imagine that most of the office will be open to the pool to give views out over the structure. I would allow for some areas to be closed off for privacy though. The walls would need to be safe as well, so it wouldn’t ever be too low!

3. The elliptical arches will cut through the office and help to add some support.

4. The office will ‘bulge out’ of the side of the building slightly here. Designing this detail will be hard work!

5. The office cuts through the existing structure at many points. I will need to carefully design how this happens and where is best; maybe shifting the shape slightly to accommodate this.


Second Floor

New plans3

1. I have designed a communal area in the centre of the office. This will allow staff to congregate for meetings, food and just to chat. It is purposefully less linear than the rest of the office space.

2. Like the first floor, the second floor of the office links into the existing Baths. This time it is the second floor above the lobby. I would like the office to get more and more private as it moves up through the building, and so I imagine that this space would be private offices for the staff, or maybe a canteen away from the hustle and bustle of the pool.

3. The desk continues up through the office and links in at the end with another linear office to give views out onto the roof and over Poplar. I like the way the new office links up all these previously fractured spaces.

4. The office eventually ends on the roof of the old second class baths. From here is can move around the roof to give views not only over Poplar to the east, but to Canary Wharf to the south. I would like to look into designing something for this roofspace to maximise the views.

5. Views over Canary Wharf would be best from here. This area might need re-levelling to make sure it all matches up.

6. I drew this view down onto the lower section of the office and almost by accident drew it without a roof; so that those higher up can see down into the workspaces of those below. I quite like this idea of it being open, but this doesn’t give much privacy. I’d like to look into designing a system whereby a roof can be drawn up, much like a window blind, if privacy or quiet is needed.



C:UsersClareDocumentsMASTERSYEAR 2DS 51 Timeline11 S2 W

The above sections show how I progressed in thinking about point 6 above. I would like parts of the office to be covered, for meetings and private work, but then I really like the idea of it being open to the rest of the office and the pool. This will definitely need some careful thought. I would also like the structure to be a lot finer than is shown in the sections, I would like it to be almost skeletal; with sections (or the roof) able to be filled in or taken out as needed.

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