Plans are developing to upgrade and grow Londonís largest open workshop for professional makers, which provides affordable space in Enfield for members such as digital fabricators, bike builders and blacksmiths.
Building Bloqs is located in the Meridian Water regeneration area and received £2.7 million of funding in January 2015, of which £1.35 million was pledged by the mayor’s London Regeneration Fund, with the rest to be provided in match funding from other organisations.
The grant will enable Building Bloqs to upgrade its facility, moving operations to a warehouse which will provide around 4,645sq m of workshop space, which Building Bloqs says will offer a greater range of machines and processes. The new facility will be the largest in Europe, able to cater for a community of 1,000 freelance makers, small businesses and designers with a range of trades and disciplines.
The existing workshop of around 1,020sq m already allows more than 150 London producers to share space, tools and skills, with access to industry-standard machinery and processes, bookable on a pay-as-you-go basis.
Since January, Building Bloqs has entered into the design and planning process for the new facility with Enfield Council and Karakusevic Carson Architects, with the view of a “soft launch” by the end of the year.
The funding has already resulted in adding a textiles studio to the existing open workshop, which caters for those working with wood, metal, concrete, plastic and paint.
The project was founded by Al Parra, Arnaud Nichols, Avninder Nanray and Alex Motta.
Read more in the next issue of Opportunity Enfield, available this summer.
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