HTA Design LLP - Apex House
Project - Apex House
Client - Tide Construction
Architect - HTA Design LLP
Supplier - Vision Modular Systems
Technology - Volumetric Modular
Apex House is set to be the tallest modular building in Europe when completed at 28 stories of self-supporting modules. Constructed using the Vision Modular Structures modular units, the building completes a trio of innovative buildings on the same urban block in Wembley, North London. Housing 558 student rooms and a cafe, the building will be a local landmark signposting the corner of Fulton Road and Albion Way. The modules are made from steel framing and a concrete floor, connected to each other and to the slip-formed concrete core for lateral stability.
The building is an 'L' shape formed of two flanking wings, one of eight storeys and one of ten storeys that create a street frontage to Albion Way and Fulton Road and which are designed to relate to the height of the neighbouring buildings. The corner then rises to form a landmark tower of 28 storeys, and provides the core to the entire building and access to the rear courtyard. A roof terrace will also be provided for the use of residents on the top of the tower, providing views over North London.
The building will be constructed to meet the BREEAM Excellent standard and will include a communal heating system powered by a gas-fired Combined Heat and Power plant.
Predicted BREEAM score for the student housing element is 73.2% achieving BREEAM 'Excellent' 2014 Multi-residential
The building creates a variety of room types and shapes suitable for different students including wheelchair units, and a variety of shared social spaces including a café, a courtyard and a roof terrace to allow for relaxation, social interaction and group study. There is a laundry room proposed in the basement.
Set to be constructed in time for the student intake of September 2017, the building will be completed in a twelve month period. This is at least a year quicker than could be managed using traditional methods of construction and confirms the logistical and financial benefits of offsite construction for building rented developments.
The façade will be applied by mast climbers, after the modules have been installed, and will consist of a rainscreen cladding system of two types, terracotta tiling with aluminium cladding infill panels for the flanking wings and polished Glass-Reinforced Concrete with aluminium cladding infill panels for the tower. The colours of the wings are intended to blend in with the neighbouring buildings, and the tower will be a dramatic white that accentuates its verticality.