Islington Square


Property of Cain International and Sager JV partners, Islington Square

The £400m redevelopment of the former North London Royal Mail sorting and delivery centre is seeing the creation of a new shopping, leisure and residential district in the bustling centre of Islington.

Known as Islington Square, the 4.5-acre mixed-use scheme will provide 263 residential apartments, 108 serviced apartments and 15,800m2 of luxury lifestyle brands, offices, cafes and restaurants alongside a Third Space Health Club and an Odeon Lounge cinema.

The development contains a mix of listed Edwardian and new-build structures, designed and master planned by CZWG Architects. Buildings range from one to seven storeys in height, with parking provided at basement level. Developer, a joint venture between Cain International and Sager, appointed Galliard Homes as principal contractor in 2016.

Bureau Veritas is providing fire engineering services on the 46,500 m2 scheme. It was appointed as part of the contractor’s team to assess the existing fire strategy for the development and take it forward during construction to completion.

Among the main challenges faced was determining the means of escape from within the apartments as well as the common areas. This was resolved by the inclusion of sprinklers where necessary and mechanical smoke extraction.

In addition, to reduce the impact on the fire strategy design of the mix of commercial and residential areas within the scheme, the interactions between the different types of accommodation were minimised as far as possible.

The resulting overarching fire strategy supported a design which maximised the useable residential floor area to increase potential revenue for the client.

Islington Square is largely hidden away, surrounded by the famous residential Gibson and Milner Squares. The old Post Office itself fronts onto busy Upper Street, forming the gateway into a pedestrian arcade leading to a high quality central tree-lined boulevard at the core of the development.

The four, Grade II classical Edwardian red brick buildings on the site were built in the Baroque style during the early 1900s. The principal sorting office building is being converted into large loft style accommodation that celebrates its original features, including high ceilings, tall windows and ornate external detailing. Above is a collection of new penthouse apartments, each with access to a private roof garden, swimming pool and views of the London skyline.

On the opposite side of the central boulevard, the original Edwardian façade is retained at ground level, while a modern zinc-clad frame provides contrast on the upper residential floors. Next to this, a new six-storey landmark building introduces a series of sweeping curved facades, arching cornices and rounded roof-terraces, courtyards and interior spaces.

Following the initial demolition a 1960’s block at the northern end of the site, work has progressed smoothly with the project scheduled for completion in 2019.

For more information on Bureau Veritas' Construction Consultancy and Fire Safety Engineering click here or email

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