In a pro-bono move to help spur revival in Margate, David Chipperfield Architects independently conceived a hostel addition to the firm's Turner Contemporary art gallery in Margate. Dubbed the Turner Rooms, the design is made to help grow the vision of the gallery and secure its financial future. Sited on the Margate waterfront, the proposal offers new ways for people to engage with the gallery and the town through a 100 room waterfront hostel.
The Turner Rooms project provides the existing gallery building some additional space to expand its range of cultural and artistic activities. Made to complement and embrace the changing light conditions of the Kent coastline, the design is primarily residential units with meeting rooms, a café/brasserie and social spaces. To accommodate visitors and group events, the design includes space to host conferences and programs related to the Turner Contemporary. As the central element of the project, the hostel rooms are organized across four levels as simple and functional spaces facing the sea. The no-frills approach aims to make the rooms flexible in arrangement and accessible in price.
Hoping to subsidize construction costs by attracting private sponsorship and donations, the Turner Rooms aims to generate an endowment for Turner Contemporary that would allow an expanded social and educational role within the community. Last year, the Arts Council England awarded a £3 million grant to extend the Turner's main gallery, though an architect has yet to be confirmed. As an up-and-coming center for creatives, the town is experiencing an influx of new professionals and businesses in the city, largely due to efforts by the city council. The Turner Rooms project is the latest in a wave of projects in Margate that hope to boost regeneration efforts.