LSE Campus following the Kingsway fire
Julian Robinson, Director of Estates, reports on the latest position following the major fire in Kingsway before Easter.
‘LSE was pleased to reopen as scheduled after the Easter break last week; it was fortuitous in some respects that the incident occurred while the School was on its Easter break. However, some effects of the Kingsway fire persist as there are still some road closures which are affecting our suppliers and contractors. Reconnections and rerouting of cables is also continuing hence several large holes in the roads across campus.
The Estates team is in close contact with UK Power Networks (UKPN) who, together with other utility providers and working under the overall direction of Camden Council, are reinstating the vehicular and pedestrian routes in the area, although there is now pedestrian access to all LSE buildings. The situation is changing daily but currently there continues to be no vehicular access into Portugal Street from Kingsway southbound and Sardinia Street remains wholly cut off to traffic.
Sardinia Street therefore remains our greatest problem as we are unable to move two academic departments into Sardinia House as part of the decants for the Centre Buildings Redevelopment until we can get vehicular access to the street. We have therefore had to reschedule their moves, which is now having a knock-on effect on other planned moves. We are currently advised that we will have access to Sardinia Street on Monday 20th April but this is not guaranteed. In the meantime, I would ask for the co-operation of all staff affected by this issue as we work to resolve the problems we are encountering.
There are wider problems in the area as Kingsway northbound will remain closed for the foreseeable future as the utilities tunnel running underneath the carriage way has apparently been severely damaged in the fire. We will continue to liaise with the authorities to understand the longer term implications of the fire. Current information can be found at Camden Council website