Old Street Roundabout Gets A Revamp

M@
By M@ Last edited 55 months ago
Old Street Roundabout Gets A Revamp
Subway 4 is bright red, in contrast to the green line that leads to Moorfields Eye Hospital.
Subway 4 is bright red, in contrast to the green line that leads to Moorfields Eye Hospital.
Exit 2 in full camouflage.
Exit 2 in full camouflage.
Looking towards the electric bike shop, and Exit 2, which leads to The Buttocks building.
Looking towards the electric bike shop, and Exit 2, which leads to The Buttocks building.
Just follow the colours.
Just follow the colours.

You can't polish a turd, but you can roll it in glitter. That seems to be the thinking behind the flashy new look slowly taking shape beneath Old Street roundabout.

To say that the underpass and tube entrance are outdated would be an understatement. The whole sorry complex is practically a 1970's simulator, offering visitors a nostalgic suite of blind corners, abandoned packaging and lichen-infested concrete. The vague scent of uric acid seeps from somewhere, everywhere.

But things are changing. The rebranding jockeys are hard at work, plastering over the grimy walls with a colourful new wrap and hiring out the shop units to small, experimental traders. The project is financed by Transport for London, which is hoping to turn the roundabout into a small 'retail destination'. Shop specialist Appear Here has been brought in to manage the units.

Seven pop-ups have up-popped so far. Welcome to the hood Mallow and Marsh (marsh mallow purveyors), Spoon {Cereals} (specialists in muesli and unusual parentheses), electric bike company Fully Charged, juicemeisters Cold Pressed, Aussie opticians Bailey Nelson, web development teachers Makers Academy and digital marketers Driftrock. We're gladdened to find that punning lunch provider NinComSoup is still very much in business, despite the changes, as is the indie bookshop, card shop and the two old sandwich shops.

The underpass has also been chromatically transformed. The bifurcating exits are now numbered 1-4, each carrying a different colour scheme. This is potentially a huge help to partially sighted people, who use the station for Moorfields Eye Hospital. As well as following the traditional green line, they can now look out for the bright orange livery of Exit 4.

If you're interested in setting up shop beneath the roundabout, prices range from £500 per week for a market stall up to £2,000 per week for a shop unit.

Last Updated 29 April 2014