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Newcastle Leisure Building

Part 2 Project 2003
Gareth Mcknight
Rory Crawford
Queen's University Belfast, UK
The premise for this thesis design was to promote a connection between the town and countryside, as traditionally this area has been relatively undefined in Ireland.

Newcastle, a linear town, was chosen for its unique geographical location between the sea and the Mourne Mountains. The aim is to connect these three elements, as the site is located on the edge of town. The landscape of the mountains promotes a natural connection between the urban and rural areas.

The building, akin in language and scale to the mountains, is to act as a gateway between the Mournes and Newcastle, thus connecting both.

Gareth Mcknight
Rory Crawford


“Where the Mountains of Mourne sweep down to the sea”
The words of the Percy French song admirably sets the scene where the building acts as a gateway to the Mourne mountain range and provides a space for social interaction between all users and links town, sea and mountain at this historic point.

From inception through to the beautifully presented final design, the work has consistently shown the students aim to produce a building which was potentially big in scale, but nevertheless, he sought to solve this problem by creating a series of carved out spaces, large and small, allied to a careful study of materiality and sustainability.

Mr Mark Baines
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