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A Bath House in the Park

Part 1 Project 2014
John Brown
University of Strathclyde Glasgow UK
THE BARRAS BATH HOUSE

When the People’s Palace was opened by Lord Rosebery in 1898 he stated it should be; “A palace of pleasure and imagination around which the people may place their affections and which may give them a home on which their memory may rest”. He declared the building, “Open to the people for ever and ever”. The civic responsibility of a single building has never quite been so eloquently put, and what a magnificent notion it is, that a building should be the home of a whole city, a certainty in an ever changing urban environment.

The Barras Bath House is a piece of contemporary civic architecture intended to have the same spirit as the grand victorian civic buildings found around Glasgow. It is a building which is not merely functional, rather an object of joy to be treasured by the people of the city for generations to come.

The building is placed in a fragmented urban fabric, destroyed by the de-industrialisation of the east-end of Glasgow and the removal of much of the historic form. The guiding principle of the design process was urban renewal, intending to re-establish density and a sense of place to a bleak area of the city. Key moves include; the reintroduction of Glasgow Green underground station, the creation of a new public square surrounded by a reinstated tenemental block structure, and the reintroduction of active, permeable facades at ground floor level.

The building is not pretentious, but robust in materiality and rich in architectural quality. The aim is that incredible volumes, fantastical spaces and intimate moments are all combined in a journey through they building.

Buildings that connect the city create great places, great places connect people, and when people create connections with one another, great memories are formed. This building is for the people, for joy, and for the city.

John Brown

Tutor(s)

2014
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