Illegal makeover of a redundant signal box

2004 in East London

KHBT / osa_office for subversive architecture · Illegal makeover of a redundant signal box
© Trenton Oldfield

London, East End, near Shoreditch tube station beside the tracks of the railway you found a little house on stilts, formally used as a signal box but without access. This house looked like a small scaled typical single standing family house in a suburban or even countryside area. Although it was old and weathered it seemed completely out of place like a building-alien in a rough and poor environment. By refurbishing the house in a way that it expressed an idealised perfection of everybody's dream property: the walls are painted in white, structural elements, doors and windows could have different colours. This little house sat high up in the air, untouchable, unreachable.

Two sides of the building structure had been painted 'brilliant white', artificial geraniums, purchased online, had been 'planted' in typical green window flower boxes and fixed to the windows. A hanging basket with artificial geraniums had been installed alongside the front door. The balcony had been converted with the finest artificial long grass. A regular but colourful `director’s chair' rested alongside the cheapest BBQ on sale. The door was painted gloss black and conventional suburban ironmongery was installed. Without any supplied electricity a car battery, suitable for any small family car was installed with a light hooked up to a timer. The timer was set for 2100hrs each night; sunset.

KHBT / osa_office for subversive architecture · Illegal makeover of a redundant signal box
© Trenton Oldfield

KHBT / osa_office for subversive architecture · Illegal makeover of a redundant signal box
© Trenton Oldfield
KHBT / osa_office for subversive architecture · Illegal makeover of a redundant signal box
© Trenton Oldfield
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