London Underground: Camden Town

  • Project Cost Confidential
  • Architect Foundation Arch. / James Burland
  • Images James Burland

Camden Lock London Ltd gained planning permission for a new market building in Spring 2011. The new building consists of steel arch construction which is clad in both ETFE fabric and lightweight plastic panelling. The arch structure spans some 40 to 50 metres and also encompasses a mezzanine level to significantly increase the number of stalls and provide protection against inclement weather.

The location of the new market building is adjacent to Camden Town tube station and there are London Underground tunnels beneath the site. In addition there are also historic deep level bomb shelters in addition to the tube tunnels. Camden Town tube station is a major deep level station and the crown of the tunnels are some ten to fifteen metres below ground level. The new foundations will be founded at high level with a formation in natural material thus the increase in loads will not be significant by the time they have spread through the clays above the tunnels.


  • The new building may need to be piled if the depth of fill on site is sufficiently deep. If piles are necessary, then the location of the tunnels must be accurately established to avoid installing them through the crown of the tunnels.
  • Excavation or piling too close to the tunnels could damage them or allow excessive water ingress.

Design Procedures

  • Contact LUL at an early stage in the project before any design work has commenced.
  • Establish location of the tunnels and produce drawings showing relation between the new structure and the tunnels.
  • Carry out site investigation to clarify local ground conditions and provide geotechnical information for detailed design of new footings.
  • Once scheme is sufficiently developed an Approval In Principle (AIP) submission to be sent to LUL for their approval.
  • Commence site work when the AIP is approved by LUL.