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Printing and Hydroponic Facility, Rotherham

Part 1 Project 2006
Michael Dean
University of Sheffield, UK
The scheme accommodates two principle programmes; a facility for the development and subsequent production of community publications and a connected network of hydroponic allotment gardens. The idea of a reciprocal dialogue between site, building and the processes of occupation is developed as a design strategy which explores the notion of an active and engaged architecture. Water, its diversion, control and fluctuation is adopted as the medium for the construction of a communicative relationship between these forces. Water was chosen as the consequence of investigative studies examining a hierarchy of immediate topographical conditions and their relationship to the River Don.
Michael Dean

The conceptual premise is to offer a focus where publications and information are produced and disseminated. Allotments and interactive gardens are located throughout the building and use hydroponic techniques to encourage growth. This project focuses on the notion that the building will encourage the community to participate actively within their locality. The architecture has developed by understanding the physical presence of the weir and the potential impact of water within the building, be it for irrigation for plants or potential patination of materials. The culmination is an intelligent piece of design that has both physical and intellectual presence.

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