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Gasholder No. 8 is a focal point of the regeneration scheme taking place in Kings Cross, London. In
response to a RIBA competition brief, we headed up a multi-disciplinary design team with sustainability
experts, Buro Happolds engineers, landscape architects and artists.
The brief called for a multi-use space built within the Grade 2 Listed frame of a Victorian gasholder. Our
proposal creates a sheltered, flexible public space and amphitheatre, with a movable canopy made of
biomimetic, kinetic fronds. These harness solar power to open and close depending on the demands of
the weather or events; they also collect water for the landscaping.
The site features a ramped section that houses a cafe and site facilities, and which can be used as an
observation deck for taking in views over the adjacent canal and wildlife sanctuary; it also provides
seating for watching public events. The space within the gasholder features movable landscape that
can be set up for outdoor cinemas and events such as London Fashion Week, and on an everyday level
as a public piazza.