London developer to knock down half-built Hackney Wick flats over safety fears

·2-min read
The half-built Factory building in Hackney Wick (Taylor Wimpey)
The half-built Factory building in Hackney Wick (Taylor Wimpey)

A London developer is set to demolish a half-built block of flats in east London and start again from scratch after finding a problem with the building’s construction

Taylor Wimpey has taken the drastic decision to knock down The Factory development on Hackney Wick’s Fish Island after finding “potential structural issues” last August.

The 148-home project, located near the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, was supposed to launch last year and is still being marketed online with one-bedroom flats on sale for £469,00 and two-beds for £595,000.

But the scheme’s completion has been significantly set back. When the problem was found, the housebuilder immediately paused work on the 148-home scheme and brought in independent structural engineers to explore how it could be fixed.

Taylor Wimpey is demolishing this half-built block of flats in Hackney Wick (Taylor Wimpey)
Taylor Wimpey is demolishing this half-built block of flats in Hackney Wick (Taylor Wimpey)

Following an investigation, Taylor Wimpey said it decided the most “appropriate strategy” was to take down the existing concrete structures and rebuild the block using a revised design that complies with the existing planning consent.

It did not say how much money it had lost as a result of the problem.

A spokesperson for the company said: “Health and safety is our top priority and this decision has been carefully and thoroughly considered after close consultation with independent structural engineers.

“We are currently finalising a demolition strategy and timeline and are in the process of communicating with local residents and businesses about our proposals.”

Designs showing how The Factory will look when it is completed (Taylor Wimpey)
Designs showing how The Factory will look when it is completed (Taylor Wimpey)

The planned demolition of The Factory, revealed by The Architects’ Journal, comes three years after the building was approved by the London Legacy Development Corporation (LLDC).

Designed by award-winning architect dRMM, the new building on Monier Road, near the River Lea, involved clearing a cluster of old warehouse buildings on the site to make way for buildings of up to seven storeys.

The mixed-use project includes 148 homes as well as 3,761m2 of offices.

The building is expcted to deliver 35 per cent of the homes as affordable, with a mixture of shared ownership and affordable rent tenures.

The designs feature two buildings clad in white and black bricks, a triangular red-brick building with ground floor creative studio space, and a row of townhouses next to an old piano factory along Beachy Road.

It also includes podium gardens above the townhouses and workspaces.

The LLDC said it is in discussion with Taylor Wimpey to determine if planning permission is needed for the demolition and rebuild.

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