City of Westminster’s Civil Engineering T Level students were treated to a building site visit overlooking the old Paddington police station this month. Currently being dismantled in preparation for Paddington’s highest residential building by developer Berkeley Homes, the site is minutes away from the college’s Paddington campus.
After a briefing on health and safety, and donning their PPE the students were given a tour of the part completed building, learning about, and witnessing how social, economic and environmental concerns shape developments on this scale within central London. The students learned about the history of the local area, the use of carbon emissions reducing green roofs and the inclusion of neighbourhood enhancing amenities such as a swimming pool and cinema planned in the complex, as well as the efficient use of resources such as labour, materials, energy and water.
The visit was organised by Proud Places, a London-wide engagement programme run by Heritage of London Trust that encourages young people to take pride in their community’s heritage through creative workshops and site visits. The Paddington police station featured modernist concrete abstract reliefs by architect J. Innes-Elliott, and City of Westminster T Level students have been working with Proud Places, Berkeley Homes and landscape architects Farrer Huxley on how these reliefs could be adapted and re-used in the new development on the site. An exhibition of their work will be taking place this summer.
“It was great to see the civil engineering students make connections between the new development and the heritage of the site. They loved that Berkeley Homes has drawn inspiration from the local church (St Marys, Paddington Green) and are incredibly excited to be part of the project to save some of the station’s concrete reliefs. It was a great experience to work with landscape architects Farrer Huxley on ideas and designs. The visits opened their eyes to imaginative reuse of heritage in developments and what a huge part historic sites make to their communities” - Ife Davies, Proud Places