Restoring Hi-Tech Architecture


  • Peter Lenk Arup
  • Peter van de Rotten Octatube
  • Ed Forwood Forwood Facades



In this paper we will discuss a challenging, iconic, heritage, refurbishment project – Channel 4’s headquarters building located in London, England. The building was originally designed by Richard Rogers and Partners in collaboration with Arup, RFR and was executed in 1994 by Eiffel under a sub-contract package with Permasteelisa. We will methodically outline the procedures that were followed to assess and restore this ageing, iconic cable net façade where, in an almost unprecedented way, the face glass is used structurally to support the dead load of the panels below to create a chain of suspended glass panes. After approximately 25 years of service Arup was called back to provide advice to the client following a glass breakage incident.  This triggered a detailed condition survey which concluded that a project refurbishment was overdue.  Arup then provided further studies to inform strategic options as to how to best refurbish the façade.  This advice led to the appointment of Octatube to provide Pre-Construction Services Agreement (PCSA) support to assist the façade appraisal and to carry out design, material testing, calculation and to provide critical construction advice, and then lead to Ocatatube’s appointment to fully refurbish the iconic façade.





Projects & Case studies