In 1999, Barking set the architects a tough challenge to regenerate the town centre with a predominantly housing brief. The development has been accomplished with great wit, energy and a certain aplomb.
The scheme was realised in two phases involving seven new buildings including the reinvention of a drab 1970s library into a modern learning centre, retail space, hotel, 500 residential apartments and, critically, extensive public realm works carried out in collaboration with Muf Architects. Each building takes on a different persona through exuberant use of colour, texture and material shifts.
The architects have adopted a bold and graphically articulated tower - the seventeen storey Lemonade building - as the key signal of change that registers from outside the town.