Tower Re-Order

Here are the improvements that residents want after the Grenfell tower fire

International News
Here are the improvements that Grenfell tower residents want after the fire. Pictured: The Grenfell tower fire. (Natalie Oxford/Wikimedia Commons)

In the wake of a horrific fire that killed dozens, a team of six London architecture firms are reimagining Grenfell tower as a public housing development for the 21st century. The 24-story apartment building, a social housing estate in west London, was consumed by fire in June 2017. A subsequent investigation revealed that the tower’s  new cladding fueled the destructive blaze, which killed 71 people and left many others homeless.

After the tragedy, residents and public officials came together to improve the rest of the development. They selected Levitt Bernstein and Penoyre & Prasad to lead a re-design team that includes MaccreanorLavington, Murray John ArchitectsCullinan Studio, and Adjaye Associates. The firms divided the Lancaster West Estate into nine areas, and the teams created a “Book of Ideas” (PDF) based on residents’ feedback from workshops earlier this year. The estate includes more than 1,000 households.

Concept rendering of the Camelford Court revamp. (Image via Lancaster West Residents’ Association)

In some of the nine areas, residents would like to see private front-yard gardens, new balconies and elevators, rooftop solar panels, and community gathering space. Residents voiced support for security cameras and better lighting, as well as an updated assessment of fire risk, in all areas of the estate, the Architect’s Journal reported.

Along with these and other stakeholders, landscape architects at Andy Sturgeon Design and consultants at Twinn Sustainability Innovation are working with the six firms on the proposals.

The government is putting £15 million (around $20.7 million) towards the redesign, a figure the council has pledged to match.

The next phase of the project asks residents to chose which designers will bring these ideas into reality.

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