Site: International House 

Location: Ashford

THE ABANDONED INDUSTRY

A series of night-time renders of International house that display the sites lighting installation on the its facades and ground floor ceiling and columns.

photographic survey

When carrying out my photographic survey of international house, I picked up on the number of security cameras and signs around the site. This related to my narrative through my projects podium surveillance phase and gave the site a very strict and controlled feel to it, helping to put across the environment I want Waterlands mining industry to be portrayed as. Hover across each black and white image to see a small description.

A bike rack situated opposite the site by Ashford International train station. Red image zooms in on the bikes.

Front facade of International house. Red image zooms in on the main entrance area.

CCTV and flood lighting situated all around International house. Red image zooms in on the CCTV.

Perspective of the right side and front facade of International house. Red image zooms in on the window detail of the front facade. 

Top right of the back facade. Red image looks zooms in at the connection between windows on the back facade and roof elements.

Right side of International house. Red image zooms in on the lighting elements shown on the side elevation.

Staff parking situated under and around International house. Red image zooms in on a car parked under the sites first floor. 

Bottom right facade. Red image zooms in on the connection between International house and the connected job centre. 

Job centre that is attached onto International house. Red image zooms in on job centre sign above entrance.

Street art painted on the back wall of the job centre connected to International house. Red image zooms into street art elements.

More surveillance found around International house. Red image zooms in on the surveillance camera.

Back facade of International House. Red image zooms in on one of the signs found.

Door situated on the back facade leading to some stairs. Red image zooms in on the notice sign that is on the door.

Area situated under the first floor of International house close to motorcycle parking. Red image zooms in on air conditioning system.

Accessibility ramp situated to the right of International houses main entrance. Red image zooms in on the shadows cast by the ramp.

Overhead entranceway leading into main entrance lobby area. Red image zooms into elements of overhead entranceway.  

Left side view of front entrances revolving door. Red image zooms in on the top part of the revolving door and main entrance. 

Plaque labelled 'Ashlon Sculpture' situated at front vehicle entrance of International house. Red image zooms in on a section of the sign.

More CCTV and flood lights situated around International house. Red image zooms into CCTV.

Site name engraved onto stone situated by front vehicle entrance of International house. Red image zooms in on engraved element. 

Right side lobby entrance with two signs. Red image zooms in on CCTV warning sign. 

Firemans switch on exterior wall of site. Red image zooms in on lower part of the switch. 

Floor texture located around parts of International house. Red image zooms in on some of the texture detail. 

Sign reserving parking for key auto trade vehicles situated in International houses car park. Red image zooms in on top left of the sign. 

PHYSICAL CONTEXT

 International house is a 12-storey landmark office building in Ashford totalling at 50m in height. Construction for International house started in 1972 and ended in 1974, with office blocks now having had up to 77 different companies occupying the suites at one time. Main features on each floor include CCTV, central heating, conference rooms, WC facilities, shared kitchen facilities, and allocated parking. Below are some 1:100 orthographic drawings outlining the appearance of the sites exterior and interior qualities. Select the grey arrow to the right for further drawings and detail.  

INFRASTRUCTURAL CONTEXT

 International house consists of three elevators and two flights of stairs for internal accessibility. Externally, the main entrance features a central revolving door, along with two side doors for disabled access. The back elevation features a door that leads directly to a set of stairs, and the front elevation also features a door to the right that also leads to a second set of stairs. Below is a 1:200 exploded axonometric drawing of International house showing detail of accessibility, floor levels and companies who currently rent parts of the building. Click on the zoom buttons to see more detail. Double click to reset the zoom. 

Roof

11th floor

Ground floor

Vacant

Natural England

Tony Gee and Partners LLP, International Associated Attorneys Ltd, Tracomet, Export Link International, Garrison Consulting Ltd

British Transport Police

Multiconsult UK Ltd

AECOM, Rix & Kay Solicitors LLP

H & B Meeical, Agile Business Consortium Ltd, Blossoms trading Ltd

Locate in Kent, Handelsbanken

Job Centre

10th floor

9th floor

8th floor

7th floor

6th floor

5th floor

4th floor

3rd floor

2nd floor

1st floor

INFRASTRUCTURAL CONTEXT

Below is a GIF of a 1:4000 site map of Ashford with regard to my site location. From this we are able to see the close proximity of Ashford International train station to International house, as well as nearby road links and the main points of interest within the area. 

 
 Train lines
 
Major roads
 
 International House
 
 Ashford International Train Station
 
 Ashford Designer Outlet
 
Ashford Civic Centre
Pink-Site-plan.gif

environmental CONTEXT

Below is a GIF of a 1:4000 site map of Ashford with regard to my site location. From this we are able to see the close proximity of the river Stour to International house, making it a risk to flooding. Also shown are the main areas of green space situated around Ashford. Click on the grey arrow to the right for more information on environmental context. 

ENVUPDATED.gif
environmantal%20cnxt_edited.jpg
 
 International house
environmantal%20cnxt_edited.jpg
 
 River Stour
 
 Green space
environmantal%20cnxt_edited.jpg
 
 Flood risk areas
FLOODING_edited.jpg

ephemeral CONTEXT

Bernard Tschumi (1994) stated: “There is no space without event (…) no architecture without program”. For Tschumi, space is ‘created’ by an event taking place within it; and architectural space is defined by the activity taking place inside/in front/around – in any spatial relation with it. (Savic, 2012) Although Tschumi goes by the formula 'object-movement-event', I chose to take this concept and adapt it to 'action-location-witness'. When hovering over each image you will notice the column on the left consists of ACTIONS; movements of individuals captured around the site, LOCATION; where that action took place, and WITNESS; the infrastructure or architecture that witnessed the action. By carrying this out, I was able to gain a better understanding of the type of people who occupied the site area on a regular basis, as well as the main infrastructural/ architectural focuses and the way in which they view the action, whether it is from above looking down so the individual is unaware, or directly in front where the individual is deliberately travelling towards the witness. Select the grey arrow to the right for further ephemeral information.

ACTION: Elderly woman at the bus station walking towards a bus.

ACTION: An office worker cycling.

ACTION: An individual pressing a button to open the train.  

LOCATION: This action was captured at the bus station outside of Ashford International train station.

LOCATION: This action was captured at the front entrance International house.

LOCATION: This action was captured on a platform at Ashford International train station. 

WITNESS: One of the main architectural/infrastructural witnesses of this action was the bus itself. 

WITNESS: One of the main architectural/infrastructural witnesses of this action was the front facade of International house.

WITNESS: One of the main architectural/infrastructural witnesses of this action was the overheard sign and shelter on the trains platform. 

SITE MODEL

Below is a 1:100 scaled model of my existing site, with the opening and closing actions displayed through a GIF. Below this are some photographs capturing the interior and exterior. Click on the grey arrow to the right to see more information on the models build process.