From sorting office to 'salon of the sciences' events centre
HAT Projects for the Science Museum
Contract value: £3.5m
Cost per m2: £3,500
The Smith Centre, a series of event spaces for museum patrons and trustees, had been a postal sorting office and loading yard. HAT Projects’ approach was to restore the original architecture – including glazed brickwork, parquet flooring and a dramatic timber-and-glass roof lantern – while adding necessary functionality. A sequence of rooms leads to a partly-sheltered courtyard, linking to the museum’s main concourse via a repurposed undercroft. The interior design combines bespoke furniture with classic pieces of 1930s design, alongside displayed objects from the collections – among them a spacesuit and a rocket – to create ‘a salon of the sciences’.