UCL Leases Doomed, Alien-Infested Building

By M@ Last edited 65 months ago
UCL Leases Doomed, Alien-Infested Building

Isn't it gorgeous?

University College London has extended a tentacle north of its native Bloomsbury, to occupy this whopper of a building on Hampstead Road. The sprawling complex, which includes a moribund filling station next door, will house the Bartlett School of Architecture during a revamp of its existing premises. The outpost will also act as temporary admin space while parts of the main campus are upgraded to a masterplan.

Despite its quotidian appearance, 132-140 Hampstead Road has both an interesting recent past and future. Last year, it was hired by Secret Cinema for a spectacular screening of sci-fi flick Prometheus. A few months ago, police broke up a 13-hour illegal rave, which had scared off the aliens. Now it's the turn of the students.

Longterm, despite striking plans to redevelop the site, a more likely future is a date with the wrecking ball. The complex stands on land to be requisitioned for the High Speed 2 rail line, shortly after the end of UCL's planned tenancy in September 2018. However, the University has bagged a clause to extend the lease, should HS2 be delayed.

Image from Google Street View.

Last Updated 20 February 2013


UCL have rented this place previously, using one of the floors to house their library's special collection whilst a new building was build for it. The special collection's new building never happened so it's currently housed near Kew, apparently they're still in UCL's "master plan" but whether or not that'll happen is anyone's guess.