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Deptford: The pub/cabaret

Part 1 Project 2004
Adeline de Vrij
Kingston University, UK
Throughout the year we have been asked to consider the nature and structure of an urban topography. Looking at the urban block, its mass, diversity and identity, we have structured our entire year work into a small urban strategy, where each project (the link project, the auction house, the housing and the Pub/cabaret) complements and interacts with each other to finally create a very diversify mixed use ‘block’. Interesting in the more local part of Deptford, I have been looking throughout the year at the fragmented relationship between Deptford high street and the more industrial landscape of the Creek. Having, first of all, worked on the ‘end sequence’ of the site, by remaking the edge of the creek and by creating a new public space in collaboration with the Laban Dance Centre and the auction house project, I have looked, for the next part of the project, at the ‘entrance sequence’. Trying to consolidate the relationship between Deptford high street and the Creek, I wanted, with the next project, to reinforce the dialogue between the Laban, St. Paul church, the Auction house and the mixed use block created by the juxtaposition of the housing and the Pub/cabaret. As the site is set in direct tension and dialogue with the very imposing church, the first intuition was to challenge its volumetric by creating a new identifiable block that would set a dialogue (even tension) between the Laban, the auction house and the pub cabaret. The original cubic mass of the block strategy started to break down to become a translucent skin homogenizing the divers activities taking place in the building. Designed by extrusion, the inside volumes of the building are revealed according to the light quality or the activities taking place. The facade is seen as an independent suspended weather skin that not only unifies the mixed use block into a relatively readable volume, but also, by creating a strong tension or dialogue between the four ‘object placed on the green corridor’ help str
Adeline de Vrij

The success of this project rested on painstaking observations of the conflict between local identity and everyday life, and the global anonymity of London. Based on those observations the project sought to redeply its tensions through the introduction of a mixed-use armature of pub-cabaret and auction house. The skill of the project rested on its hierarchical rearticulation of the ameliorated city. Working between Deptford High Street and Deptford Creekside, its material and spatial elements suitably expressed the ambiguity between local trade and national service networks. Remarkably thorough in its iconographical intentions, its designer has the ability to adopt broad contemporary issues and handle them at the intimate scale of occupied space.

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