Underneath the arches on both viaducts are shops and restaurants and bars, carefully chosen for their considered approach. Paul Smith and Tom Dixon (visit the excellent Coal Office), Universal Works and Miller Harris, Casa Pastor and Barrafina. Samsung will be moving into one of the twin structures – King’s Cross has become London’s most desirable hi-tech hub. Pop-ups will appear every six months in the former Victorian horse-stalls running along the adjoining Lower Stable Street, making Coal Drop an incubator for fresh and experimental talent; performances, festivals and parties are planned.
And while it’s been designed as a shopping destination, you can easily come here and wander and get lost amid the shadows and open spaces, and leave empty-handed. This is no squeaky clean piece of anonymous architecture, no Westfield, but part of London’s fascinating industrial and cultural past, full of stories, that’s been closed off for years. It’s easily London’s most successful makeover. Think of the city’s other big stations and they’re usually places you want to get away from as soon as possible – but Coal Drops Yard is a place you could stay in all day.
Address: Coal Drops Yard, Stable Street, London N1C 4AB
Telephone: +44 20 3479 1795
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