Two Fifty One Tops Out


Southwark’s latest skyscraper Two Fifty One, delivered by Laing O’Rourke for Oakmayne Properties in conjunction with Lone Star Real Estate, topped-out with a ceremony on the 41st floor earlier this month. The mixed-use tower reaches 131 metres at its highest point and is 80% complete.



One of the tallest residential towers in London, Two Fifty One is almost three-times the height of Nelson’s Column (52-metres), one-and-a-half times the size of Big Ben (96-metres) and around eight times the length of a double-decker bus.
The delivery team has set a blistering pace with the building of Two Fifty One, taking only 70 weeks to build from the ground floor to level 40, with Laing O’Rourke’s industry-leading Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) construction process including high-quality bathroom ‘pods’ manufactured off-site and efficiently installed in the structure. At peak delivery, a new floor was completed at Two Fifty One every six days, with more than 350 people employed on the project.

Ray O’Rourke, Group CEO of Laing O’Rourke, said “Laing O’Rourke is delighted to be continuing its role in the exciting regeneration of Elephant & Castle where we have been part of the emerging landscape for more than 10 years. The Two Fifty One building is our tallest project to date in the area and this high-rise, mixed-use residential and commercial development harnesses engineering excellence and our unique DfMA capability.”

Two Fifty One is at the forefront of innovative construction, utilising DfMA, where manufactured components are produced under rigorous quality-controlled conditions, at Explore Industrial Park, Laing O’Rourke’s UK manufacturing facility. The components, delivered daily on flatbed trailers, are craned in to position and assembled into the concrete structure and façade. The façade of the building is made up of 1,082 manufactured concrete panels with the aluminium windows and doors already installed before the panels are placed on the building. This process delivered a quicker construction programme, with greater consistency and quality and a safer working environment.

Martin Lent, Chief Executive of SCM, the development managers for Two Fifty One said: “We are delighted to have reached such an important milestone in this landmark scheme, which is probably the most iconic building in the Elephant and Castle. Two Fifty One is testament to Elephant and Castle’s ongoing transformation, becoming a secure investment in Zone 1. Two Fifty One is setting new standards for Elephant and Castle with its quality of finish, unparalleled amenities and the latest internet technology. We look forward to welcoming our first residents within the next 12 months.”
Olivier Brahin, President of Lone Star Europe Acquisition Limited said “We are delighted with the speed of progress on site which is a testament to the innovative off-site construction process, as well as contributing to the exciting regeneration of the Elephant & Castle area.”

The 0.51 acre development consists of a striking 41 storey, 131 metre tall, residential tower and an eight storey, 35 metre tall, 21,500 sq ft office building, linked at ground level via a WiFi enabled landscaped garden. 
The topping out ceremony is a tradition that stretches back over 650 years, though it has roots in Ancient Egyptian ceremonies with similar purposes from around 2,700BC. The architect William of Wykeham described the topping out of Winchester School in March 1393. In the 14th-Century, it was customary to put a yew tree branch at the tip of the building to ward off evil spirits. The topping out of Two Fifty One was attended by those who have worked on the project and Southwark Council representatives, including the leader of the Council, Councillor Peter John, OBE (South Camberwell ward, Lab).