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Gateshead Maritime Youth Centre

Part 1 Project 2008
William Bright
Newcastle University, UK
An intervention in the Gateshead Quayside, bridging the gulf between future aspirations and current social realities, acting within a larger scheme to attract and retain the excluded people of Gateshead.

Sitting along the River Tyne on one side, the structure addresses a new public amphitheatre on the other, itself acting in tension with the existing urban fabric. Within the centre an experiential journey is provoked through a series of distinct architectural machines, all bound within a unifying envelope elevated above the Quays – maintaining the conceptual notion of a vessel throughout.

William Bright

William Bright's maritime centre is sophisticated, believable and buildable.

Drawing on local context, the proposal:

-expands quayside activity to enhance the Tyne as a working waterway;

-joins the landmark Sage building, historic St Mary's Church, and iconic Tyne bridge around a dramatic urban amphtheatre;

-creates a sheltered south-facing external civic space for Gateshead, and an internal journey of discovery activated by 'architectural engines' and accentuated by controlled views.

It also draws on international precedent:

-Herzog de Meuron, Diller and Scofidio, Piano and Rogers, Stephen Holl, and others,
producing a solution which is at once appropriate and exhilarating.


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