Medway Development Company
BDP - Structural Engineers; MLM – MEP Building Services, Sustainability, Fire Safety Consultants. dha – Transport Engineers
C.F. Møller Architects and Lyall, Bills & Young Architects
C.F. Møller Architects
dha – Planning Consultant; Heritage Collective
Mountbatten House is a 12-storey former banking headquarters constructed from an innovative slotted precast concrete technology above a crenelated brick plinth. The project combines four design initiatives: the adaptation of Mountbatten House, the design of a new extension building, temporary façade improvements to an old bus station, and the creation of a new public realm.
As well as achieving high quality living accommodation, there will be public amenities on the transformed rooftop and at ground level, with restaurants, pop-up kiosks, cafes and space for market stalls and outside seating. A variety of dwelling types are to be provided, many double-aspect or through-units benefitting from east and west light through the facades’ large windows. All dwellings are provided with private amenity space in the form of generously-sized chamfered balconies.
Key strategic views govern the height and shape of the new building. Cascading rooftop terraces of a 12-storey extension slope down dramatically towards a curved end above a deep colonnade of red brickwork. The design creates stronger visual connections to a historic theatre and an 18th century hillside fort.
Fantastic views and adaptive re-use
A new vaulted rooftop structure on Mountbatten House will transform and disrupt the flat roofline of the building and provide public amenity in the form of a double-height events space that offers fantastic views of the town centre, historic landmarks and long views across the Medway river. The removal of long access ramps to a disused bus station will allow an enhanced public realm to sweep into a new town plaza designed to act as a forecourt to the theatre and as a new threshold to the retail centre. Active commercial frontages at street level will create new opportunities for the commercial, social and cultural dynamic of the town centre.
Rather than demolishing a redundant building and creating waste material, the adaptive re-use of the Mountbatten House’s structure, cladding and embodied energy, the innovative re-use of its internal spaces and the provision of a variety of new external amenities allow the repurposing of the building to serve future needs.