The Pod

Fathom Architects, London, 2017


Subscribe now to instantly view this image

Subscribe to the Architects’ Journal (AJ) for instant access to the AJ Buildings Library, an online database of nearly 2,000 exemplar buildings in photographs, plans, elevations and details.

Already a subscriber? Sign in

AJSP2018 The Pod1 - Simon Cracknell 

Simon Cracknell (website)     Download Original

  • AJSP2018 The Pod1 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod2 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod3 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod4 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod5 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod6 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod7 - Simon Cracknell    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod8 - Tian Khee Siong    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod9 - Tian Khee Siong    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod10 - Tian Khee Siong    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod - Drawing1    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod - Drawing2    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod - Drawing3    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod11 - Tian Khee Siong    
  • AJSP2018 The Pod12 - Tian Khee Siong    

A striking, mobile, podcasting studio, designed to draw attention to and reference the BBC heritage of Stanhope’s new White City Place development.

Launched in February 2017, The Pod was designed to put White City Place – the emerging creative campus in west London and formerly home to the BBC – on the map. The Pod works as both public art installation – helping visually centre and define this creative district as it undergoes construction – and a creative vehicle, drawing the creative community to this new campus.

Creative agency and placemaking specialists dn&co challenged Fathom Architects to design this striking, mobile, fully functional studio to enable brands, entrepreneurs and publications to take their first steps into the world of podcasting. Our concept took inspiration from loudspeakers and the movement of sound to create a disrupted cube with audio waves emanating from its centre. The 3.4m x 3.4m Pod has large circular windows, referencing speaker cones, allowing a strong visual connection between the broadcasters and passers-by.

The bold patterned façade of The Pod was created by translating the first spoken words transmitted by radio: “One, two, three, four. Is it snowing where you are Mr Thiessen?” into sound wave interference patterns, using bespoke digital scripting. The sound waves are represented by 350,000 ‘pixels’ using a colour palette drawn from the development’s branding.

An ambitious brief, short time frame and non-standard project typology created a set of delivery challenges which required an innovative approach to construction. Collaborating with Box Deluxe – a fabrication studio specialising in structures for film, TV and live events – we conceived and developed a viable design with a strong visual aesthetic. Wholly fabricated off-site, the structure was winched to its final location overnight, achieving the client’s aspiration for a pod which ‘appears from nowhere’.


  • Begun: Dec 2016
  • Completed: Feb 2017
  • Floor area: 12m2
  • Sector: Public realm
  • Total cost: £93,000
  • Tender date: Nov 2016
  • Address: White City Place, 191 Wood Lane, London, W12 7FP, United Kingdom

Professional Team