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sTEAm Factory

Part 2 Project 2012
Peggy Le Cren
London South Bank University London UK

An alternative to the conventional industrial building type, sTEAm Factory presents Baker Street with mechanical hybrids inhabiting architectural cases from the structural frame and outer skin, which extend and merge into the public/private realm of operational and ceremonial spaces.

The site is a city block defined by the north-south axis of Baker Street, London. The four sides of the site each represent an element in central London’s infrastructure/social hierarchy and history; the mews, one way street, two way street, and major three lane artery. This gives each of the four elevations of the site a different resonance and dynamic, reflected in cyclic patterns of speed in use and a resultant collision of micro-ecologies.

The social flux between the extremely wealthy residents and the underclass of street cleaners and the homeless was examined to determine what sort of architecture benefits a city where the division of class is becoming greater and greater. The arrival of the Olympics also affected this research dramatically as it was rumoured that Westminster Council would be introducing new laws which made giving to the homeless illegal in an attempt to eliminate ‘anti-social behaviour’. What Britain was once known best for, its charitable charm, is now being eradicated in an attempt to make London look as economically stable as possible.

sTEAm Factory takes a romantic look at the Victorian philanthropic era of the 1900’s in Great Britain and incorporates a beneficial program that accommodates the diversity of users of Baker Street. Camellia tea plants are cultivated on site and harvested by both workers and mechanical hybrids. Da Hong Pao tea is imported from China and has the ability to naturally reduce chronic pain. The hiring out of elite tea rooms helps pay for those less able to afford the Da Hong Pao tea, such as the homeless, who are inclined to suffering from arthritis due to long periods outside in cold weathers. The unique blend of human touch and appreciation of ‘the machine’ enables the factory to produce the prolific amount of tea needed whilst providing new jobs and prosperity to a City in recession.


Peggy Le Cren

Tutor(s)
Ms Lilly Kudic
2012
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