The new Operational and Training Centre for the Met Police in Hendon provides facilities fit for 21st Century policing.
The scheme consolidates roughly 25 outdated buildings dispersed across the 73-acre site into two buildings laid out on 11 acres at the north end of the estate, to provide 21,500 sqm of flexible training and operational space for over 2,000 officers and staff.
At the heart of the development is a new parade ground for passing out ceremonies, overlooked by a listed statue of Sir Robert Peel. The main educational building is conceived as a three-storey rectangular volume with a continuous ribbon of office-type accommodation wrapping around several internal atrium spaces. The south-west corner of the rectangle is cut away to create a strong visual link between the central atrium and the external parade ground. A smaller two-storey block incorporates a historic building and houses specialised training facilities such as a firing range and crime scene rooms.
Externally the palette of materials recalls the cleanliness and clarity of the traditional Metropolitan Police uniform, using a combination of black hand-worked zinc and silver anodised cladding to shape a strong set of lines around the façade. Bright yellow is used sparingly to mirror the colour of a medal on a policeman’s lapel.