Plans to demolish Edward Rudolf House to make way for office block

The proposed new building

The proposed new building. Image: Gensler

A former headquarters for a children’s charity could be demolished and replaced with a new four-storey office block.

US-based Royal UK Properties III Ltd has come back with a new application after it lost an appeal for a five-storey development on the site in Clerkenwell.

The building in Margery Street started life as a car park and filling station and was converted into offices in the 1960s.

It was remodelled in the 1970s and covered with brick cladding and housed the council’s architects before the Children’s Society moved in and renamed it Edward Rudolf House, after its founder.

The charity moved out in 2019.

The building is near the Rosebery and New River Conservation areas and close to Wilmington Square.

A previous plan for a five-storey office block was rejected by Islington Council in 2020.

There were concerns about its impact on nearby Grade II listed buildings, the daylight and sunlight impact on homes nearby and the planning committee said the design was “incongruous”.

The planning inspector turned down a 2021 appeal because the building would have “major adverse impacts” on daylight and sunlight at nearby properties.

There were also concerns about the block “dominating” the street and its “cube-like” design.

A report which looked at the options of retrofitting the current building concluded it is “not suitable for future adaptability and longevity or to address current needs for a flexible and future-proof workspace”.

The architects Gensler said the building’s appearance “is broadly considered to have little architectural merit.”

Their plan includes green roofs on terraces, and solar panels.

A daylight and sunlight report for the applicant said the proposed building would meet national guidelines for 13 of the 20 neighbouring buildings and would “not unduly prejudice” access to natural light.

People can respond with their views until Saturday 9 September.