img(height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=2939831959404383&ev=PageView&noscript=1")

Bunhill 2 recycles energy in a lacy pink coat

Cullinan Studio MacEwen-shortlisted energy centre makes a north London street more attractive as it harvests heat from the Tube to power a district heating network

The energy centre uses waste heat from the Tube to power the district heating network. Credit Paul Raftery
The energy centre uses waste heat from the Tube to power the district heating network. Credit Paul Raftery

Building Bunhill 2 Energy Centre

Location Islington, London

Concept architect Cullinan Studio

Delivery architect McGurk Architects

Building type Infrastructure

 

This is the first ever scheme to take an underground train network’s waste heat and use it to provide low-cost, greener heat to local homes and public buildings as well as provide cooling to the Tube in the summer.

The mayor of London brought together Islington Borough Council and Transport for London to form the outstanding partnership that has delivered this project. Bunhill 2 adds 550 homes and a primary school to the existing district heating network, which currently serves 800 homes and two leisure centres in Islington. It reduces annual CO2 emissions by 500t, lowers heating bills, contributes to the capital’s zero carbon commitments, improves air quality and makes it more energy self-sufficient. The expansion of district heating networks could achieve 63% of London’s demand by 2050.

How the energy centre works by using waste heat from the Underground.
How the energy centre works by using waste heat from the Underground. Credit: Ramboll
The expanded network the energy centre provides for locally in Islington.
The expanded network the energy centre provides for locally in Islington. Credit: Ramboll

Commissioned by Islington Council, Cullinan Studio’s design uses high quality materials that link to the infrastructure heritage of the site. Cladding is recycled aluminium, cast aluminium from waste sources and low carbon, vitreous-coated mild steel. Designed to be demountable, it allows for the replacement of entire containerised plant assemblies. The upper storeys’ cut-out pattern responds to varying degrees of ventilation needed for equipment behind, giving the facade dynamism and transparency. Artwork panels by Toby Paterson tesselate along the base, informing and engaging the community while also help to transform a prominent site along City Road that had been unsightly for decades. The building is now a beacon of how collaborative thinking and work can improve lives, lower costs and waste and  make inroads towards preventing climate destruction.

MacEwen Award judge Tumpa Fellows said: ‘This is a great example of how you can make things aesthetically pleasing even when you’re dealing with climate change and its social impacts.’ Meanwhile, judge Beth Bourrelly commented: ‘It is fantastic in terms of technology and sustainability.’


See more MacEwen shortlisted projects here

  • Bunhill 2 Energy Centre as seen from City Road. Credit Paul Raftery
    Bunhill 2 Energy Centre as seen from City Road. Credit Paul Raftery
  • Bunhill 2 Energy Cente location plan. Credit Cullinan Studio
    Bunhill 2 Energy Cente location plan. Credit Cullinan Studio
  • The filigree facade, designed by Toby Pateron. Credit Paul Raftery
    The filigree facade, designed by Toby Pateron. Credit Paul Raftery Credit: Toby Paterson
123

Credits

Client Islington Council

Concept architect Cullinan Studio

Delivery architect McGurk Architects

Funding Celsius

Funding and co-ordination of London’s involvement in the Celsius project The Mayor of London

Client engineer and contract administrator Ramboll

Design and build contractor  Colloide Engineering

Cost manager Gleeds

Design, manufacture and installation of heat pump system GEA

Testing and commissioning assurance Topic Plan

CDM advisor and principal designer AECOM

Real life performance analysis London South Bank University

Artist Toby Paterson

Latest articles

PiP Office and Workspace Design Webinar | RIBAJ

  1. Products

PiP Offices and Working place design webinar