The Canaletto Tower | UNStudio

SAVE The Canaletto Tower | UNStudio

Project Name: The Canaletto Tower

Practice: UNStudio

Products: Des Sources, Johnson Naylor LLP, Goddard Littlefair, Waldo Works

Firm Location: Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Completion year: 2017

Gross Built up Area: 21,732 m²

Project Location: London, United Kingdom

Design Team: Ben van Berkel, Wouter de Jonge with Imola Bérczi and Sander Versluis, Aurelie Hsiao, Wing Tang, Nanang Santoso, Derrick Diporedjo, Maud van Hees, Henk van Schuppen, Olivier Yebra, Jan Schellhoff, Fang Huan, Qiyao Li, Perrine Planché,

Clients: Orion City Road Trustee Limited

Structural Consultants: URS Scott Wilson Ltd

Landscape Consultants: Churchman Landscape Architects Limited

MEP Consultants: Hoare Lea

Project Manager: Buro Four

Interior + Furniture: UNStudio (public/amenity areas), Des Sources (Level 24 Lounge), apartment interiors by Johnson Naylor LLP, Goddard Littlefair and Waldo Works

Others: Façade Engineer: Buro Happold Ltd Lead-Consultant/ Architect [Involved up to Planning Submission]: PLP Architecture Extended advisor list: CDM Coordinator & Cost Consultant: E C Harris LLP Planning Consultant: Gerald Eve LLP CfSH/ Energy Consultant: Bespoke Builder Services Ltd Lighting Specialist: Lighting Design International Townscape Advisor: Richard Coleman Consultancy Environmental Statement/ EIA: URS/ Scott Wilson Access Consultant: David Bonnetts Associates Traffic & Servicing: SKM Colin Buchanan Wind Engineer: RWDI Anemos Ltd Gym & Spa Consultant: Raw Corporate Health Ltd Management Company Daylight/ Sunlight/ Overshadowing: eb7 - chartered surveyors and environmental consultants Surveying: Greenhatch Group Ltd

Photo Credits: Hufton + Crow, Eva Bloem

More Specs

Project Description

(Text submitted by the Architect)

Designing a vertical community – the Canaletto tower in London

The 22,000m2 Canaletto residential tower in London employs the concept of clustering several floors together to establish a group of ‘vertical communities’.

Offering waterside living, the 31-storey tower comprises studios, one and two-bedroom apartments, a variety of three bedrooms and one distinct penthouse with a full rooftop. Canaletto also includes shared amenities such as a swimming pool, health club, media room and resident’s club lounge with a terrace on the 24th floor.

UNStudio’s design for the tower, which is located in the London borough of Islington, incorporates the remodeling of the facade, a streamlining of the building’s mass and a contrasting of scale and detail untypical of a residential tower. The facade for the Canaletto tower was designed to emphasise its residential character and to define a distinct ‘Islington’ response.

Evabloem_Canaletto_UNStudio Evabloem_Canaletto_UNStudio Evabloem_Canaletto_UNStudio Evabloem_Canaletto_UNStudio Evabloem_Canaletto_UNStudio


In the design near and distant townscape views are enhanced through scale, detail, and material variation. The proposed building facade creates a modeled elevation in which clusters of adjacent floors are grouped together.


The elevation additionally offers sustainability benefits. The surface modelling creates opportunities for shading, balancing good internal daylight and views with reduced heat gains. The articulation of the facade will additionally reduce wind down drafts and, in combination with canopy proposals at the base of the building, provide an improved pedestrian microclimate.


The modelling of the balconies within each grouped cluster lends variability to the facade and the living experience for the residents in the building. As outdoor spaces play a large role in the enjoyment of living environments, the creation of unique, sheltered spaces of high quality was a driver in early design development. The aspect of using both textured and smooth materials contrasts with the expected contemporariness of a typical high-rise metal construction and lends this facade a residential ‘twist.’

 Shared spaces and amenities

Outside of the privacy afforded by the 190 individual living units, the Canaletto tower caters for a variety of collective leisure activities by way of shared amenities where the residents can enjoy healthy leisure pursuits or relax in areas designed for gathering and socialising.

A landscaped garden on Wharf Road provides access to the residential lobby, whilst the ground floor garden frames the entrance lobby and provides a green oasis off the busy City Road. A public restaurant will also be located at the base of the building on City Road.

UNS_Canaletto_©Hufton+Crow UNS_Canaletto_©Hufton+Crow UNS_Canaletto_©Hufton+Crow UNS_Canaletto_©Hufton+Crow



Read More: Housing | London | Highrise Tower | UNStudio
Other links