Coal Drops Yard opening


Coal Drops Yard is the new Heatherwick Studio-designed public space and retail district in London’s King’s Cross. It opened to the public on the 26th of October this year.

The yard was built in the 1850s to receive trains carrying coal mined in England’s northeast. Coal stored in these warehouses was crucial to London’s national dominance and the expansion of her industries. But over the years the cast-iron and brick structures had become partially derelict, serving light industry, warehousing, and nightclubs before partial abandonment in the 1990s.

Thomas Heatherwick presenting the project at the press view.

The design extends the inner gabled roofs of the warehouses to link the two viaducts and define the yard, as well as creating fluid patterns of circulation. The flowing roofs, supported by an new freestanding structure interlaced within the existing fabric, rise up and stretch towards each other until they touch. This forms an entirely new floating upper storey, a large covered outdoor space and a central focus for the entire site. This space will be occupied by Samsung in the next months as a showcase space to present the latest technology.

All photos are © Francesco Russo