Royal London Docks Ecological Park

Royal London Docks Ecological Park


Millennium Mills, London Royal Dock

Project Description

A New Mixed Use ecological Park, Food Market & Research Facility for Newham

The project explores the relationship of nature and architecture. Believing in interpreting our buildings as a forest with different layers and ecosystems we can look at how our ideas of scale, permanence and adaptability can work together to reduce waste, improve sustainability and future proof buildings. The key being that adaptability allows growth and reduces the need to demolish for future needs.

Currently, there are widespread issues with our relationship to the planetary ecosystem, even problems with the habitats we have engineered for ourselves, which fail to adequately meet our needs.
56% of species in the UK are in decline and 15% are threatened with extinction. A combination of the loss of pollinators and the degradation of our topsoil is even threatening the sustainability of human food sources. Meanwhile peak temperature increases are exacerbating the urban heat island effect eroding the habitability of our cities.
This paints a picture of a dysfunctional relationship between humans and the natural environment.

The proposal was developed through the simple notion of Waste Not, Want Not. In order to tackle issues of waste and demolition the project to long term view of any proposed development and through research explored ideas of permanence, adaptability and evolution as seen in nature.

Creating a concept which will be referred to as the NATURAL MEGA-STRUCTURE. The manifesto
visualised its architectural intent as one key concept; ARCHITECTURE AS A FOREST. Split into three ecosystems commonly seen in rain forests. Each part of the wider ecosystem but each with their own individual adaptability and life cycle.

There is a joy to be had in the reinvention of existing buildings. Bringing a new life to existing structures helps conserve memories, reconnect local neigbourhoods with their historical heritage and enhances the environment while minimising waste.

If we are going to achieve the critically required reduction in carbon emissions more will need to be done to improve and reinvent our existing building stock rather than build new. Retro-Fit First.

Jourdan Palmer



My interest in architecture developed from the idea that our earliest experiences of the built and natural environment forms a baseline expectation of what we consider “normal”. I'm always keen to design buildings and landscapes which push these boundaries and work together in symbiosis.