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Lincoln Athletics Centre of Excellence

Part 1 Project 2004
Mark Thompson
University of Lincoln Lincoln UK
The project was initiated by an intense study of site. The focus was on the unseen paths that exist within that space and the movement of bodies that create these paths. In particular the three-dimensionality afforded to such paths by the criss-crossing of the space by birds in flight. The site I examined had a high interaction of people and birds; what became fascinating were the constant flashes of birds that flew in front and overhead. This became the focus of my investigations.

I recorded and decoded many flight patterns, exploring the shapes and forms that were created from flight. My investigations became more fixed on the mechanics of the motion I recorded. ; This lead to a specific examination of the bird primarily responsible for the traces I had been recording, the flocks of pigeons that passed through the space. The constant throughout was the rhythm, speed, ever-changing direction and the elegance possessed.

My initial attempts at manifesting these observations into an architectonic form were with the production of a series of non-site and site specific installations. The essence of the installations was to capture the rhythmical nature of the video recordings taken. The installations then became a conduit for the development of an architectural language to be applied to another site and program.

The brief was the design of a sports science faculty building, to be located on the campus of Lincoln University

This building could help bolster British athletics, act as a landmark for Lincoln and aid in the development of the understanding of sport, with educational links to Lincoln University. Lincoln Athletics Centre of Excellence would be recognised alongside, ‘Pondsforge’ ‘Picketts Lock’ and ‘Loughborough’

The building incorporates, an aquatic zone, consisting of underwater treadmills, dash pools and a hydrotherapy pool. A strength training zone, where there is an area specifically designed to concentrate on pure enhancemen

Mark Thompson

Mark’s project began as an examination of spatial traces left by birds in a public square. These ‘spatial mementos’ were explored, analysed and reconstituted using time-lapse video and physical models The process adopted concerned itself with the nascence of architectural expression and the formalising of propositions from an individual interpretation of the ‘space between’, the obvious and the immaterial, and the phenomena that exist there.
His examination of these place-specific events and artefacts facilitated a disconnection from the arid, traditionally accepted determinants of initial place-assessment (site analysis), and fostered the creation of
unexpected non-linear connections between diverse phenomena. The resultant scheme is an exuberant collection of forms contained within a rigid geometric frame and sited in the University campus Lincoln.

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