A Bird’s Eye View of Koops Mills Mews


Koops Mills Mews is a mixed use development completed in June 2015, it consists of around 2,500 sq/ft of ground floor commercial units, seven residential flats and a standalone studio house.


Situated on a Grade II Listed 19th Century former tannery mill, the site was met by very tight constraints. The site is nestled in a corner between the Greenwich railway viaduct, a neighbouring industrial site, warehouse apartments in the listed building, a new neighbouring residential development and the Jubilee Line underground directly 25 meters below; the only point of access via a gated cobble stone courtyard. Along with the site’s former industrial use as a Victorian tannery mill these constraints created for numerous design challenges; however all of these various components created for a contextually rich and dynamic site.


The design successfully addresses these constraints while also incorporating inspiration from the site’s industrial history. Acoustic glazing and large double glazed windows enable the apartments to have access to natural light as well as be undisturbed by noise from the adjacent railway and industrial units. The drone video highlights the prominent skylight to the third floor apartment, which creates an atelier scale living space. PV panels situated on the roof have allowed the building to achieve a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating. Hints of the site’s industrial past are also revealed with the influence of the listed buildings cast iron windows mirrored in the new glazing. A visual nod to the site’s history is also created with the use of rustic dark grey bricks which wrap around the white rendered mass, accentuating its form. The massing is stepped back at every floor to create spacious terraces facing the railway in what initially appeared to be a tight space. The design succeeds in providing housing on a former industrial site, transforming the design constraints into an overall thoughtful design which significantly enhances the rich historic context.


If you are looking to develop a site and require design advice, please contact Mark Fairhurst Architects on T: 020 7407 7070 or E: info@mark-fairhurst.co.uk to arrange a free consultation.