KieranTimberlake’s New London Embassy Breaks Ground
The Delaware Valley has a remarkable wealth of architectural talent, and this week’s groundbreaking for the New London Embassy proves the point. In 2010, Philadelphia architectural firm KieranTimberlake bested 36 architectural firms in the embassy design competition.
The Department of State’s Bureau of Overseas Buildings Operations employed a panel of architects, academics and diplomats to pick the winner from four heavy-hitter finalists: Richard Meier; the I.M. Pei-founded firm Pei Cobb Freed & Partners; Morphosis, which won the design competition for the new embassy in Beirut and which has the most annoying website ever; and KierenTimberlake. For those who are equally passionate about architecture and Philadelphia, the win bordered on orgasmic. The Department of State fact sheet explains some of what makes the site work:
As pure geometry, the cube represents an open and inviting presence on the London cityscape. The design is a hallmark of the many innovations in the project – a landscape without any visible barriers, fences or walls; opening of the inside space to the outside; solar harvesting and sun shading in the design…
A four-sided colonnade forms the base of the building. Through both custom and the openness and accessibility of their sheltering form, colonnades have long evoked the architecture of diplomacy…
Energy and environmental design issues have been balanced with the overall project goals of openness, diplomacy, functionality, security, value, and will reduce costs and increase operational efficiency.
Below, the renderings of the site, which is expected to be finished in 2017.