Hidden away on side streets in Euston, will soon be a giant glazed cube that’ll housing ventilation systems for the Northern line.
It’s being provided by High Speed 2, as they are demolishing an old ticket hall from the early days of the London Underground which had been repurposed into a ventilation shaft of its own and also housed an electricity substation. As that’s gone, to keep fresh air flowing, a replacement is needed, and Camden Council has now given approval for this glazed cube.
Covered with more than 13,000 glazed ivory-white tiles, the contemporary and functional design draws inspiration from historic London Tube stations, such as nearby Great Portland Street, and will help reflect light into the surrounding streets.
What makes the building stand out, is the facade, which is not just distinctive in design, but also acts as the air outlets for the ventilation system. This is so that the roof, where the ventilation usually sits can be a flat brown roof and more agreeable to look down on from the surrounding buildings.
The use of pale-coloured tiles also echoes the traditional practice of cladding the back of tall buildings with glazed white tiles to bring light into courtyards and confined spaces.
The tile pattern has also been designed explicitly to deter pigeons, based on research into their roosting preferences, to ensure the building doesn’t become an overnight hotel for the flying rats.
HS2 has already started demolition of the 1960s office block where the cube will eventually be sited.