Chapter Spitalfields

Located in the heart of the bustling Spitafields district in London, ISG built Europe’s tallest student accommodation.
  • Customer
  • Completion Date
    August 2010
  • Quantity Surveyor
    Arcadis AYH plc
  • Value
  • Project Manager
    Arcadis AYH plc
  • Structural Engineer
    Waterman Building Services
  • Area
    512,000 sq ft
  • Program Duration
    148 weeks
  • Architect
    TP Bennett
  • ME Engineer
    MTT Limited
Exterior showing Europe’s tallest student accommodation skyscrapper Nido Spitalfields


Located in the heart of the bustling Spitafields district in London, ISG built Europe’s tallest student accommodation. This 35-storey, £120m project features 1,200 student beds and retail units, 50,000 sq ft of office space, and 11 residential apartments and leisure facilities.

A restricted site footprint provided a major challenge on this project along with planning restrictions limiting work between the hours of 8am and 6pm. The additional building fit out works were awarded during the project which had to be integrated into the main works programme without any time implications.

Nido Spitalfields student accommodation interior - ISG

The project

Despite the logistical challenges, the slip-form cores and concrete frame were completed three months ahead of schedule and fourteen floors were handed over 11 weeks early, giving significant commercial benefits to the client. This was achieved via an engineering solution that introduced temporary beams to strengthen the completed core and provide additional stability to allow the slip-form process to continue to its ultimate height of 35 storeys ahead of the main frame, to reduce the floor cycle.

Further time was saved by elements of the build such as the bathroom pods and curtain wall unitised cladding system being manufactured off site.

ISG’s line-of-balance tracking mechanisms enabled progress monitoring in all 689 rooms, corridors and the other common parts of the building.

Nido Spitalfields student accommodation construction project - ISG


The highly sustainable scheme saved over 850,000 litres of potable water during construction, thanks to a 4,300-litre rainwater harvesting system. ISG recovered and recycled 86.5% of all waste produced on site. Timber, metal and plasterboard were segregated on site and sent directly to their respective recycling facilities. All mixed waste was transported to ISG’s waste contractor’s Materials Recovery Facility. Materials including metals, hardcore, concrete, assorted plastics, mixed glass, cardboard and paper were also sorted and recovered for recycling.