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Bracken House, London EC4

Client: Obayashi Corporation

JRA has repositioned Bracken House in the City of London for Obayashi Corporation. Originally designed by Albert Richardson in the early 1950s as the headquarters of the Financial Times, the ‘H’ shaped building underwent a dramatic reconstruction in 1988 by Michael Hopkins and Partners.

After a quarter of a century of use, JRA sensitively refurbished the Grade II* listed building. It now offers 18,600m2 of office space, an enlarged entrance hall, new internal courtyards, and a roof garden with landscaping and a running track. The office areas have been brought up to contemporary standards, featuring energy efficient air conditioning systems and state-of-the-art LED lighting, and increased daylight has also been introduced via the atrium roof, where Glasscrete has been partially replaced with clear glazing.

The team used Building Information Modelling (BIM) level two on the project to assist with design coordination and to manage clash detection. The finished model contains over 27,000 items charting every aspect of the construction, which will enable repairs and replacements to be carried out with ease in the future.

After an absence of almost 30 years, JRA’s refurbishment has made it possible for the FT to return to this iconic building.