20 Gracechurch Street

This project was awarded Commended in the New Modern Style Stone Cladding category at the Natural Stone Awards 2010.

The official guide said, 'The original building, 54 Lombard Street, has been extensively re-branded with a new Portland stone façade from the ground floor to the top of the third floor, which demarcates the podium floor. The new projecting cornice divides the street elevation from the roof-scape above.

Independent Whitbed Portland limestone was chosen along with Portland Roach for the base course to reintegrate the building with its surroundings.

The support to this stone façade is an in-situ concrete backing wall from the top of the first floor, where the load is taken back to the main colums. This minimised the number of movement joints. The stone is hand set and restrained back to the backing wall.

At the joints, head or cills, each stone had a minimum of 150mm return and the nominal joint width is 5mm. The cills are chamfered back towards the building to a stainless steel gutter and drainage system that eliminates streaking to the face. In Lombard Street a gentle curve is created from 1250mm long pieces of faceted stone. In George Yard, a new public open space is formed with a series of granite-clad conical planters in Verde Uba Tuba (Labrador Green). Internally, the reception floor to both receptions was replaced by a 40mm thick lightly flamed and sealed American Jet granite.'

The judges commented, 'This is a most interesting building. It has good traditional elements presented in a modern way. The high standard of craftsmanship which produced the long curving wall is outstanding and makes a dramatic elevation. The protection of the building with a large overhang in lieu of a cornice adds a dramatic feature.

All elements were carefully thought out, even to the detailing of the expansion joints. The façades of the building change to reflect the adjoining architecture and link the building into the street-scape with good transition from one elevation to another.'

To view this project in more detail, please click here.

20 Gracechurch Street using Portland Stone built by Albion Stone