RIBA Competitions recently announced their two-stage design ideas competition for the Great Fen Visitor Centre in Cambridgeshire. Great Fen is an internationally acclaimed vision, one of sweeping scale and ambition. Over the next 50-100 years, more than 3,000ha of largely arable land will be transformed into a mosaic of habitat: open water, lakes, ponds and ditches; reedbed; fen, bog and marsh; wet grassland; dry grassland; woodland and scrub. The competition seeks to to create around and between a restored fenland landscape which provides a living landscape for wildlife and people. Registrations will close on December 19. The deadline for Stage 1 design submissions is 2pm on January 10. To register, and for more information, please visit here.
RIBA Competitions recently awarded Hall McKnight Architects as the winner in the competition to redevelop the Quadrangle at King’s College London’s historic Strand Campus, which was considered to be unique in playing to the strengths of the historic buildings surrounding the Quad. Ian Caldwell, Director of Estates & Facilities at King’s, said ‘Hall McKnight had undertaken an impressive analysis of the site and presented a clear philosophy. By uncovering layers of the past, the architects showed a real engagement with the history of the buildings surrounding the Quad. The competition jury panel was impressed with Hall McKnight’s passion, intelligence, strategic sense and communicative ability.’ More images and information after the break.
Peel, one of the leading infrastructure, real estate and investment enterprises in the UK, recently awarded Allies & Morrison as the winner of their RIBA Competition for a new world class luxury hotel. Allies & Morrison fought off strong competition from Edward Cullinan Architects, Feilden Clegg Bradley, Henning Larsen Architects, Hopkins and Ian Simpson Architects but were selected unanimously by the Panel. Bob Allies, Partner at Allies & Morrison commented: “Allies and Morrison are really delighted to have been selected for this project, an ambitious building on a very important site, an opportunity to integrate a modern hotel into the surviving fragments of a significant Victorian landscape.” More images and information after the break.
Located in Trafalgar Square in London, the BE OPEN Sound Portal focuses on an experience that would be all about the sound. Designed by Arup, they thought it would be great if people could really concentrate on sound in Trafalgar Square, which would take people away form hustle and bustle into a space where they can concentrate and immerse themselves in sound. The original idea was that they would be able to take people away from London to another place, to hear the sound of a melting glacier or an acoustic model of the big bang. The plan is effectively two concentric circles: the inner circle for the sound and the outer circle forms the entrances. Both pieces mask the background noise. They are shells to shield the noise. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The results of the 9th Annual Emirates Glass LEAF Awards have been announced, honoring the architects designing the buildings and solutions that are setting the benchmark for the international architectural community.
The winners were selected from an impressive shortlist by an international jury of architects that included Irving Brauer (chairman, principal of Brauer Associates), Phil Holden (managing director of Pascall+Watson architects), Lucy Bullivant (architectural curator, critic, author), Paolo Brescia (partner of Open Building Research), and Kasia Fiutowska (founding partner of Sketch Design).
The 2012 award winners are:
Commissioned by the Greater London Authority as part of the Wonder series to celebrate the 2012 Olympics and Paralympics, BLOOM, designed and developed by Alisa Andrasek and Jose Sanchez from The Bartlett School of Architecture at UCL, is a crowd sourced garden. Designed in neon pink, which is the official Olympics color, BLOOM is conceptualised as an urban toy, a distributed social game and collective “gardening” experience that seeks the engagement of people in order to construct fuzzy BLOOM formations. More images and architects’ description after the break.
Undergoing the most significant change since the historic station was completed to Brunel’s design, the new Paddington Station, designed by Weston Williamson Architects, will provide a major new gateway for London. Serving local, national and international passengers, the Crossrail Station balances many design issues including heritage, conservation, transport integration, way-finding, orientation, servicing and security to create a world-class pedestrian space alongside the existing Network Rail buildings. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The regeneration of Peabody’s St John’s Hill Estate in South London, designed by Hawkins\Brown, was recently granted planning permission. The masterplan reintegrates the site to its immediate surroundings. A new pedestrian avenue connecting the station to the common includes two public squares: one at the center of the scheme, the other opposite the station. The central square provides a large public space activated by a community hub. The application, which was submitted to the London Borough of Wandsworth, has involved close consultation with residents, a number of other local groups, and the local authority. More images and architects’ description after the break.
July 27, 2012 marks the opening ceremonies of the London 2012 Summer Olympic Games. As the Olympics approach closer, the eyes of the world will inevitably turn to London and its new infrastructure. Over the past 12 months, the Olympic Park in London’s struggling east side has changed dramatically. With the structures of the main sporting venues complete, you can now get a real feel for the layout of the park and the compact nature of the site. More images and information after the break.
Located in the Olympic East End, the London Pleasure Gardens is a new 20-acre riverside arts and entertainment destination. Patterned after the Pleasure Gardens of the 17th and 19th Centuries, LPG invites visitors to listen to music, admire paintings, stroll, drink, flirt and immerse themselves in culture. Featuring open-air concerts, dance and theatre arenas, historic and contemporary architecture, an urban nature reserve, a boutique hotel and a floating cocktail bar, LPG will evolve over the next three years, acting as an entertainment centre but also a platform for artists and musicians to showcase their work to the public. Here, we speak to LPGs creative director, Deborah Armstrong about the project, the regeneration of the Royal Docks and the artists and architects involved.
Planning permission for a new extension to the Victoria & Albert Museum has officially been granted today. The £41 million project will be the biggest new art space in London since the Tate Modern.The bid to design a 1,500 square metre underground gallery for temporary exhibitions, courtyard and entrance on Exhibition Road was won by architecture firm, AL_A, in March 2011. We interview Amanda Levete, founder and director of the firm, about the specifics of the plans and her thoughts on the government’s support of British architecture. Amanda Levete is one of the most successful women in architecture and is married to Ben Evans, director of The London Design Festival. She regularly collaborates with artists such as Anish Kapoor and has previously worked on projects such as the Selfridges department store in Birmingham, the media centre at Lord’s cricket ground and, with her own firm, installing ‘The Timber Wave’ in the entrance to the V&A.