East London Arts & Music (ELAM) is a free school sixth form located in Bow, East London, for students aged 16 to 19 who wish to pursue a career in music or digital media. The design brief for the new accommodation was to produce a statement building with state of the art facilities for both the school and the community it serves.
The site is particularly difficult, being bordered by Network Rail to the north and the A12 to the west, which provide design challenges in terms of noise and pollution. There are also a number of easements crossing the site which limit the extent of building and available external areas.
The design solution incorporates a ground floor suite of ‘industry standard’ recording studios and entrance foyer, with the first and second floors providing a 400 seater performance / auditorium space, supported by administration, café and general teaching rooms. The building form includes a masonry base onto which is applied a sloping metal clad box, employing a series of diagonal, vertical and horizontal planes to provide a dynamic building form. The frontage to the A12 also features a signage ‘light box’ which signifies the ELAM presence within the locality.
The building provides a major addition to London’s specialist music teaching and performance venues.
Architect & Lead Designer
LB of Tower Hamlets
International Music Sponsors
Industry Standard Recording Studios
Multi-Purpose Hall/Lecture Theatre
Stat-of-the-Art Editing Suites
Tight Urban Site