The consultancy is redesigning the building’s Great Room along with the entire ground floor.
Originally winning a competition in May 2011 with its proposal for the refurbishment of the Great Room, the consultancy was then asked to modernise the ground floor of the Grade-1 listed building as well.
Matthew Lloyd plans to flatten the floor of the Great Room and add movable seating to turn it into a multifunctional venue. The ground floor will be opened out and new informal meeting spaces will be added.
The consultancy also hopes to install high-performance ventilation and projectors, as well as equipment for live-streaming events from the Great Room to other rooms in the building and the RSA’s fellows around the world.
Mikael Schilling, project architect from Matthew Lloyd, says that it was challenging to bring in technology but keep design changes ‘gentle’.
He says, ‘The last time RSA House had major refurbishment work was in the ’80s. The technology wasn’t quite what they wanted. Their tagline is “21st-century enlightenment” – the building should reflect that.
‘We hope to keep rooms pristine and classic with a strong respect for the building’s grand architecture but turn it into 21st-century venue.’
The work will be finished by June, according to Matthew Lloyd.