Practice

We are architects and urbanists. We strive to design beautiful buildings that have long life and can adapt over the generations. We also shape enduring places whether new pieces of city or settlements at any scale. All our projects are concerned with the crafting of every detail and an appreciation for the uniqueness of each context.

Allies and Morrison is more than 300 strong. We come from around the world and our diversity is one of our fundamental strengths. While we are one of the largest practices of our kind, we have many of the qualities of a small studio culture where individuals can thrive on the exchange of ideas in a friendly and nurturing place to work.

We work throughout the UK and also around the world with projects in North America, India, southeast Asia, the Middle East, Ireland and mainland Europe. In addition to our core disciplines of architecture and urbanism, we have specialist expertise in conservation, consultation, interiors, landscape, visualisation and urban research.

Allies and Morrison studios

Our home is an urban campus in Bankside, a historic and dynamic piece of London. Comprising four buildings dating from the 1800s to 2013, it features a variety of workspaces, meeting and conference rooms, an in-house workshop and print room, two roof terraces, a series of stepped roof gardens, flexible exhibition and event space and a cafe.

We have also designed a number of projects in the vicinity including the Bluefin Building, Bankside 2 and 3, The Crane Building, 67 Southwark Street and buildings on nearby Lavington Street and Great Suffolk Street.

AT HOME IN BANKSIDE

Our studios include Farnham Place, a lane which we have given back to the city as an open route. When the weather is nice, it is a popular spot with al fresco diners from the neighbouring The Table Café, which was first opened by the practice in 2004.

As architects, we are known for the rigour of our technical delivery, a commitment to quality, to embedded environmental performance. As urbanists, we are known for developing plans that are flexible and pragmatic, inspirational in vision, responsive to the local climate and character. In every project we seek a tailored approach, one that understands the aspirations of our clients, is intrinsically sustainable and is grounded in a commercial awareness.

CRAFT

Details, like this window at Ash Court, are important. This award-winning student residence at Girton College, Cambridge was built with a Passivhaus approach.

LONGEVITY

The building of Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is a thirty-year project that has unfolded under our Legacy Masterplan. Before the 2012 Games, it was an industrial backwater. Today, it is a restored ecosystem. Tomorrow, it will accommodate an inclusive hub for living, learning and culture.

MAKING

Many of our design ideas are first given form here in our modelshop, which occupies pride of place on Farnham Place. We use models as an integral part of our design process across most of our projects.

CAMBRIDGE

Our Cambridge studio is housed in the top of the former granary building on Laundress Lane, overlooking the Mill Pond. It is at the heart of the Old Press/Mill Lane site for which we are currently developing a masterplan commissioned by the University of Cambridge.

In working with us, clients will encounter a dedicated team with a wealth of knowledge across most project types. Behind the success of each of these projects is an enjoyment in creative collaboration with clients, users, fellow designers and specialists.

PARTICIPATION

Managing Partner Jo Bacon delivering a lecture for the RIBA, where she is a Trustee and nationally elected Councillor. Many of us frequently participate in debates about architecture and the city, speaking at events ranging from UN-Habitat's World Urban Forum to the RTPI Planning Convention.

Led by our Partners, we operate as one studio across different sectors. In higher education, for example, we are delivering a number of projects at Britain's leading global universities: Cambridge, Oxford, the University of the Arts London and Imperial College London. We design cultural buildings, offices, workplaces, hotels and have delivered thousands of new homes. As masterplanners, we work with local authorities, private developers, investors and institutions.

THE WHITE TABLE

Partner Artur Carulla leads a team discussion. On projects large and small, design decisions emerge from conversations around the many white tables found in our studios.

BOB AND GRAHAM

Allies and Morrison was founded by Bob Allies and Graham Morrison. The design for a new public landscape at The Mound, Edinburgh was the subject of an open architectural competition held in 1983. The pair collaborated on a submission, and their selection as winners led to the formation of the practice in 1984.

UK, EUROPE AND THE WORLD

Partner Alfredo Caraballo participates in a charrette exploring density in Copenhagen organised by the Van Alen Institute. Today, our work takes us to places like Liverpool and Manchester, Milan and Paris, Toronto and New York, Singapore and Abu Dhabi.

Conversation and dialogue are the essence of how we work. This spirit of sharing is also at the heart of practice life. It is a joy to open our studios to the outside world, hosting debates about the city and inviting organisations such as the London Society and The Architecture Foundation to hold their events. Each year, we put on an annual lecture series featuring figures from academia, practice, journalism and development. Further highlights in the practice calendar include an annual Summer Study Trip, weekly yoga classes and our fortnightly office drinks.

CAKE

Cake is big at Allies and Morrison. We also put it to a good cause. Regular practice-wide bake sales raise money for a range of charities.

AN OPEN STUDIO

Opened in 2003, 85 Southwark Street was the first of the four now interconnected buildings of our studios. The RIBA-award building features, what TimeOut London has dubbed, one of the city's must see staircases.

ACCESS TO ARCHITECTURE

Our community and social responsibility projects focus on expanding access to the creative skills that underpin a career in architecture. We sponsor the Dulwich Picture Gallery Drawing in Schools Programme, culminating in an annual studio exhibition presenting the artwork of Southwark students. Architects from our practice participate as instructors in Open City's Architecture in Schools programme and teach at the London School of Architecture.

SHAPING THE CITY

We are helping to shape key sites of regeneration across London and the UK. White City (presented here by partner Paul Eaton) is one such place. There, we have been involved in the design of the original BBC Media Village, its re-imagination into White City Place as well as Imperial College London's new campus.

LEARNING

Each summer, we take time out to learn from a different place with a study trip. In recent years, this has taken us to Oxford, Paris, Cambridge, the new Louvre in Lens and Antwerp (above). Each place gives valuable inspiration.