InstagramKarakusevic Carson Architects

Kings Crescent Estate Phases 1&2

  • View of new buildings looking east along Murrain Road towards Clissold Park

  • View of new buildings from Clissold Park

  • Model of Phases 1&2, 1:250

  • Exploded axonometric of Phases 1&2

  • Exploded axonometric of new residential building containing homes for social rent

  • New residential building containing homes for social rent

  • View looking east along Murrain Road towards Clissold Park

  • View looking west along Murrain Road

  • View of a courtyard garden enclosed by new and refurbished buildings

  • Sectional sketch of family homes at roof level

  • Dwelling plans on 5th and 6th floors

  • Interior view of flat for social rent

  • Interior view of flat for social rent

  • View of communal staircase

  • Façade and balcony detail of new building

  • View of new and refurbished buildings looking south along Green Lanes

1 / 16
Hackney Council
The London Borough of Hackney
Completed 2017
Units and density
374 homes (273 new and 101 refurbished), 188dph 
41% social rent, 10% affordable, 49% market sale
300sqm retail and café space

Designed and delivered following significant community engagement, the first two phases of the Kings Crescent Estate Masterplan combine carefully refurbished and new social housing within an ambitious public realm and civic amenities. Importantly for a project of its kind, the design is completely tenure blind, with social rent, locally affordable and market sale homes mixed seamlessly throughout the masterplan.

Our aim was to re‑link the run‑down and partially demolished estate back into the city and improve the lives of residents who had been left living around a hoarded off pile of rubble for almost two decades. In our re‑design, well‑overlooked and connected streets and spaces extend to link‑up with the wider urban grain and create a strong framework for the placement of new residential buildings. A semi‑pedestrianised and landscaped ‘playstreet’, Murrain Road, is at the heart of the scheme and links all homes to nearby Clissold Park. Furnished with traditional and interpretive play equipment, the street is a lively and active place where people can meet neighbours and friends.

New buildings and refurbished council homes are carefully combined to form linear courtyard blocks, with landscaped gardens at their centre. The set of three new buildings in phase 1&2 signal a fresh approach to public housing with bold, confident and elegant buildings articulated with fine grain detailing and crafted from beautiful, hardwearing materials. Their massing and elevations subtly respond to surrounding Victorian housing and the existing 1960s blocks, with taller buildings creating a strong urban frontage along the primary routes and the park edge.

Retained 1960s council homes are upgraded with winter balconies and re‑worked entrance sequences and staircases, crafted in a complementary material palette. Across the new residential buildings, a mix of dwellings types and tenures are provided to meet local need and range from 1‑4 bedroom flats all with their own balconies, to large family‑sized maisonettes on the upper floors. Double‑height communal entrances and lobbies with through views into courtyards and seating areas create a welcoming arrival into all homes from the street and are finished in a range of durable and hard‑wearing materials.

Design Team

Lead architect and masterplanner
Karakusevic Carson Architects
Henley Halebrown
muf architecture/art
Peter Brett Associates
Peter Brett Associates
Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design
Higgins Construction


Civic Trust Award 2020 ‑ Regional Finalist
Civic Trust Award 2019 ‑ Regional Finalist
RIBA National Award 2018
RIBA London Award 2018
Hackney Design Award 2018
New London Award Mayor's Prize 2018
AJ Awards 2018 ‑ Housing Project of the Year
AJ Awards 2018 ‑ Editor's Choice Award
London Planning Awards 2018 ‑ Best Borough Led Project
London Planning Awards 2018 ‑ Best New Place to Live ‑ shortlist
New London Awards 2018 ‑ Housing ‑ shortlist
Brick Awards 2018 ‑ Worldwide category ‑ shortlist
Buildings Awards 2018 ‑ Housing Project of the Year ‑ shortlist


Agnese Sanvito (architectural model), Jim Stephenson, Peter Landers, Tim Crocker