Greenwich Peninsula Model
Locations: Greenwich, London
Interactions: Design, Fabrication, Installation
Processes / Materials: acrylic, brass, brescia marble, Cedar, CNC router, custom electronics, diochroic film, forming, high density foam, LEDs, Lego, machining, mdf, melamine faced ply, metal welding, mild steel, moss, mouldmaking, Neon, perspex, plywood, powder-coat finish, resin, rubber coating, stainless steel, steel, travertine, wood, Zinc
Types of Client: Architect, Design
Greenwich Peninsula is to be redeveloped, and as part of this the area around North Greenwich Station has been revamped to include a new Art Gallery – NOW Gallery – and also the marketing hub for Knight Dragon’s development.
For the hub we created a model of the Peninsula, showing a fun and vibrant idea of the new mix of development which will be happening, designed by Design Research Studio for Knight Dragon.
We began with a flowing base of rubber coated MDF, which was designed to follow the contours of the Thames – as if the viewers were walking through the Thames to observe the Peninsula. This base was stepped and has an interior structure of steel to support the model.
The ‘North side’ of the river is a simplistic representation of London, with Melamine faced Plywood CNC routed to show the landmarks of London – the both buildings and cultural icons, such as cabs and buses. Canary Wharf is recreated in high density foam, coated with rubber.
The Peninsula has a wide range of materials representing the mix of buildings in the development. The hub itself is represented by a circular disc of light, clad in copper, topped with a bell jar. Some blocks are represented by Lego buildings, others by carved chunks of Travertine and Brescia Marble. Tall towers of brass and perspex emerge from mixture, and neon tubes pick out the proposed running track through it.
Green spaces are represented by Reindeer Moss – preserved and fire-proofed – and a collection of Cedar Wood blocks form a nearby area.
To help viewers orientate themselves large zinc signs which are internally lit identify each area.
Two tube trains also run through the model, and the Emirates Airline cable car, along with aeroplanes circling above, as if about to land in the nearby City Airport.
The planes hang from stainless steel hoops, and slowly spin on motors we have housed in brass, to be in keeping with the interior design of the hub.
The cable car stations are also clad in waterjet cut brass, the lower one sits on the model, the upper is 6.5 metres above the ground on one of the steel pillars in the window. Twelve cable cars hung from stainless wire make their way up and down, powered by a motor in the lower station.
After finishing the base, different members of staff took on different tasks, so each set of pieces were produced quickly and fitted into the larger picture. Welding, wiring, casting and building all took place in our studio, before we moved everything to the site.
We then put the model base together and completed the wiring needed to power everything visible on the model. Train tracks were laid, and the neon tubing fitted before we set out all of the ‘buildings’, we worked from scaffold to attach the aeroplanes to the ceiling and the upper station of the cable car to the steel column.
The model is free to view, within The Hub, just across the reception area from NOW Gallery.