Life Under the Westway

Life Under the Westway



Maxilla Gardens



Westway Trust



Grow 2 Know, Cameron, Wyliewood





Life Under the Westway aims to regenerate Maxilla Gardens and transform them into a community garden that tells local stories of past and present. The innovative project will increase the biodiversity in the green space whilst creating much needed community facilities and becoming an example of sustainable design and upcycling of waste materials. It will help highlight the environmental and social challenges faced in North Kensington as we look to the future for hope and change.


This project will encapsulate this essence of community resilience and resourcefulness in revitalizing this pivotal open green space nestled in the heart of North Kensington. The centrepiece of the new garden is a new temporary pavilion designed by GKA. Conceived as a ‘Green Bandstand’ it will be the only ‘all-weather’ space in the garden and so plays an important role as a flexible space for the community to come together, to meet, to play and to plant.


The form of the pavilion encompasses the visual language of the double helix featuring two lightweight roofs, intertwined, and spiralling up to the sky, a counterpoint to the heavy concrete form of the Westway above it. The pavilion is open and transparent, simultaneously inward and outward facing, offering users views out towards the garden as well as inwards to a peaceful courtyard.


The pavilion will be constructed entirely from upcycled material. Seating will be formed from gabion cages filled with rubble with scaffold board seats. The floor is made from permeable resin bound gravel formed from crushed rubble waste while the roof is made from upcycled scaffold tube and scaffold boards.


The pavilion will integrate nature and planting throughout. The gabion cages will be planted with a variety of plants including ferns and grasses to create a habitat for insects and wildlife. Climbers will be planted at the base of the columns, reaching up the scaffolding structure to the roof which will also be planted with a rich mix of low-maintenance native grasses and wildflowers. The centrepiece of the pavilion will be a large mature tree that the community can gather beneath, a space for informal chats, performance and play.