Living and learning: Keybridge House and Wyvil Primary School

Lambeth Council has recently granted planning permission for the second phase of Keybridge House in Vauxhall, London. It incorporates a hybrid of uses with 125 new homes and an expansion to the Wyvil Road Primary School, providing 360 more school places to accommodate the growing community with twelve classrooms, indoor and outdoor playspaces. The project is a hinge piece that aims to complete the wider Keybridge House scheme, which is onsite now and will deliver a total of 470 new homes.

Phase 2 continues and develops the contextually-rich architecturally language and character of the first phase with the use of the same red brick and detailed cues that are responsive to its Victorian neighbours. It is a single building, 19 storeys in height, yet it plays a multi-faceted urban role, mediating changes in scale and urban conditions with a stepped and folded massing that addresses the neighbouring listed Vauxhall Griffin Pub and other tall buildings around it. Playspaces are incorporated with a main outdoor playground located to the western part of the site and complemented by two internal play terraces on the first floor and informal play areas making use of a tall basement. The school’s entrance opens directly onto the street establishing a strong visual connection to the existing Victorian school building.

The provision of a primary school in a tight, central London location itself is an innovative typology and reflects the increasing density of sites such as these.