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London, water tower, water tower house, Leigh Osborne, Penarth water tower

The eight-story water tower was designed for the nearby Lambeth Workhouse and Hospital, and it was the tallest water tower in all of London when it was completed in 1867. But the tower fell into disuse in the 20th century, and it became home to thousands of pigeons. “There were 2,000 dead pigeons in there, and poo that went up to the top of your wellies!” Osborne told the Penarth Times.

Converting a structure that was built to hold water into one that’s more conducive to human activities is no small task. Workers had to remove a great deal of brick to create enough room for living spaces, and Osborne and Voce also added a modern kitchen, a living room and a home gym. A new elevator was added, which links up with the original twisting staircase. And Osborne converted to top of the tower, which previously held 750,000 gallons of water, into a living room with 360-degree views of London.

Incredibly, the entire build-out only took eight months. “It was incredibly complicated, because we had a sharp deadline and an evaporating budget,” Osborne told the New York Times. “We just threw money at this thing to employ the dozens of workers that were needed to make it happen.”

Via the New York Times, Penarth Times and TreeHugger

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