The RIBA President's Medals Student Awards

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An intellectual approach to the pursuit of architectural ideals through cultural and technological investigation and innovation.

A logical, pragmatic and rational response to a thorough analysis and investigation into an urban environment. The area that was chosen is Ilkeston, a small town that is feeling the effects of Urban Decay and isolation with a population on the rise and industry falling steeply. The project centres on creating programs, developments and architectural interventions to provide Ilkeston with a framework to support a more effective, efficient and dynamic urban area.

After a thorough analysis into the town’s cultural, social, political and historical aspects, the Bennerley area was picked to form the basis of the response to provide the town with a framework to create a more efficient, effective and sustainable town. Whilst promoting the landscape, social interaction and self-sufficiency. Using the abandoned relic of the Viaduct became instrumental in treating this structure as the spine that my interventions would rely on. Machining the forgotten relic into a living farming machine to provide food, social interaction, a possible income, a landmark for the area and hence the centre of a master plan that would continue to grow with the bridge and the town as they become more aware of the possibilities of both technology and the natural environment.

I predominantly aimed to use processes and facilities of design to create structural and spatial form, with the function being the heart of the proposal, yet also the catalyst for its aesthetic. The core of the project stemmed from a comprehensive investigation into the town, the chosen site and both their neighbouring context. Hence, the program is focussed around the social, historical, political and potential of the town. I hoped to create an architectural intervention that stemmed from the manipulation of the landscape and surrounding environment into structural components that would be wholeheartedly experienced by the user.

David Mcgowan
Tutor:
James Dale
Behzad Sodagar
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