What used to be an incongruous area for employees to park their bikes has now become a shiny new office block for curators, designers and other teams at the National Gallery.

Work began on One Gallery Hub in January 2019 as part of the institution’s plan to offer a more flexible office environment – more than a year before this would be cast into the mainstream agenda by the pandemic.

© The National Gallery, London
© The National Gallery, London

The new offices are designed to provide both modern workstations for on-site tasks and facilities to easily work from home. Six floors have been devoted to office space, with the basement areas now comprising meeting spaces alongside storage facilities and bicycle parking.

As part of the build a formerly inaccessible courtyard has been incorporated into One Gallery Hub and become the glazed Belvedere Courtyard, revealing the Renaissance-style Belvedere Tower designed by Edward M Barry.

The honey-coloured original brickwork brought to prominence by this aspect of the project has been sympathetically restored and now flanks a break-out facility for staff.

© The National Gallery, London

Elsewhere, the top storey of the structure now offers the team views across Trafalgar Square towards Whitehall and St James’s Park.

Purcell Architects designed One Gallery Hub within the confines of the National Gallery’s Grade I listed building, with fit-out and refurbishment specialist Willmott Dixon Interiors serving as the project’s main contractor.

The project team also included The Morton Partnership, Andrew Reid & Partners, Faithful Gould, IFC Group, Montagu Evans, MCM Office Design Consultancy and Waterman Acoustics.

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