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Client Background

Described as an urban business campus, Angel Gate in London provides workspaces for companies and offers the best of all the Angel and Clerkenwell districts have to offer.

Following recommendation from a previous client, architects Child Graddon Lewis approached us as the experts for bringing together multiple greening systems, and as a team that could develop a full biophilic architecture package.  One of the main purposes behind enhancing the area was to encourage workers to come back to the office once Covid restrictions were lifted.

Proposed Solutions:

  • Ground planting
  • Wire / Climbers
  • Pergola with climbers
  • Wildflower green roofs
  • Modular living walls
  • Planters

Project Drivers



3D design of an urban courtyard with a pergola, trees and seating areas

The aim

Our aim was to provide Angel Gate and its community a design that would be iconic and sustainable. Through the design proposals, we wanted to provide employees with a lively, refreshing, biophilic feel which will not only enhance the courtyard but also better promote well-being.

Back to the office

Covid-19 has been a difficult journey for most of us, and now that we’re getting back to going to the office on a regular basis, the proposed greening, including living walls, landscaped areas and flower beds would play a vital role in creating a better environment for people to come back to and enjoy. The proposed design will create an engaging environment and retain the spirit of Angel Gate.

Making a grand entrance

Starting with the two entrances, we’ve really integrated as much variety as possible, with large areas of ground planting with low to high level growth to lend the feel of a garden to the space.  There are also criss-cross climbers along the boundary wall with architectural lighting to brighten the corner, and a tall living wall to not only hide some pipes but make use of another opportunity for bringing nature in.

The actual entrance itself has climbers arching over, giving the visitors a feel of what’s inside.

a courtyard entrance with a vertical garden, ground planting and climbers

Soil-based modular living wall

The other entrance is similar, although instead of climbers arching over the doorway we have a modular living wall covering a larger surface area.  This packs a powerful visual impact that is immediately noticed on approach. 

3D visual showing an entrance way with a natural living wall and lit up signage with ground planting

Bringing vibrance to darker spaces

In the area we were looking at, there were several little corners and passageways that didn’t get much natural light and had no visual appeal.  In some of these spaces we designed climbers and ground planting at the foot of the wires to give colour and brighten the spaces.  Architectural lighting was proposed also to ensure plant health and make the space more accessible.

3D visual showing a corridor with vertical planting and ground planters

Open spaces

In the open spaces at Angel Gate, we brought in a full soil-based living wall which provides a much better coverage than climbers or wires, along with two wildflower green roofs.  Whilst the purpose of this project was to provide maximum biophilic benefits, we can integrate features that are good for biodiversity too, such as soil-based living walls and roofs sown with native wildflowers.

Another key element was making the space welcoming and inclusive.  This meant including easy access to different levels, seating and work areas at different heights was important.  These were often integrated alongside greening, such as bamboo in the middle of a circular seating area, flower beds full of colourful plants, or simple ground planters.

3D visual showing a living wall, bamboo tree, ground planting, wildflower green roofs and wire climbers.

Surrounding ourselves with nature

As Angel Gate is all on one level, apart from using living walls, green roofs and taller trees alongside the ground and perimeter planting, we were limited on how to create an immersive experience with nature. 

As you can see pictured here, we decided to include a pergola where the beautiful bougainvillea would be allowed to grow up and around, providing shade for those working below, and a stunning natural feel to the space.

360° natural experience

In one of the archways, we proposed hanging planters in different shades of greens and flowering creepers to hang from the ceiling, again creating a full 360° natural experience.

3D visual of hanging planters in a dark corridor

Forming a realistic proposal

Our work also included pulling together the costings for the landscaping, breaking it down by each feature so the project was easily scalable for our client.  Nature is important to our health, and we wanted to ensure that the greening proposed was realistic which is why we tabulated our designs for our client to get a comprehensive view.