The Final Thesis project was displayed at the end of the WSA end of year show in 2018. During Sean’s next period of employement this work would aso be displayed and presented to Lord Norman Foster during the Foster + Partners graduate show 2019.
Constructed Fragment Lighting Qualities
A taxonomy of photographs helped to realize the broad potential for application of the constructed fragement. The qualities of the fragement differ the experiencial experience of spaces. These qualities include, reflectance, transparancy, prefabrication and the abstraction of light to name a few. These translate into architectural ideas of privacy, movement and can be used as mechanisms to enable functionality of space.
Conceptual Space | Central Hall
The thesis development looked at understanding the needs of a town hall. This had to both assist the development of the town of Leominister as a town that with steel fabrication capabilities as well as having a sympathetic approach to the local timber framed vernacular. The fragment allowed the bridge between these two vastly different worlds.
Conceptual Model | Spatial Qualities of a Structural Sheet Steel System
The final conceptual model looks at integrating the original timber material palette of Leominister with the future palette of it’s steel fabrication industry. Alongside this, the model helped to represent the strength of such a slender and thin material in a structural capacity. 1:1 models using where also used to test the strength of the steel system.
Thesis: Exploring the use of contemporary fabrication techniques in transforming the socially associated motifs of historic Leominster
To many, medieval market towns in the UK conjure images of narrow alleys, small street markets, local pubs, parish churches and more. These places make up the social environments in many of these towns and associate with the familiar motifs found in the historic fabric that have occupied these towns for centuries. Perhaps, no motif encompasses many medieval towns more-so than the visually dominant exposed timber framed buildings. This is certainly true for the small rural town of Leominster.
Industrial Estate, Leominster
Waterworks Lane, Leominster
Pen sketches | The Current Leominster Vernacular
Despite Leominster’s timber frame backdrop, the town is now in the unique positon of having the greatest density of steel fabricators in the country. However, this industry has lacked influence or impact within the town’s social centre.
Steel Frames of Corn Square, Leominster
Steel Frames of Corn Square, Leominster
Frame Depth Model
Paper Interogation of Sheet Steel
Experimental Models | The Traditional Timber Frame in Steel
My thesis explored the translation of the timber framed vernacular through the technological capabilities of the local steel fabrication industry. In Leominster, the world of traditional fabrication in the local vernacular has been substituted for the globalized world of computerized, mass produced and standardized components and this has consequently resulted in vastly contrasting urban landscapes. It has been debated that it is within this process of making that the qualities of intricacy and the translation of beauty have disappeared from design. The thesis ultimately looks to achieve a continuity between the two worlds in the context of Leominster’s central social environment.
Constructed Fragment | 1:1 Steel Model
An explorative 1:1 sheet steel system, derived from the timber frame, harnesses the experiential qualities of the town’s High Street and has informed my projects programmatic decisions. The thesis proposal, a new town hall/ steel fabricators guild, exploits the abilities of the new system which showcases the interactive philosophies of shop front transparency, office privacy and light capture, street movement, and engagement of which all relates to the existing social environment in the town.
Topographical Model of Leominster in Mild Steel
The above model is a topographical model of Leominster which explores the fabrication process available in the town. The model measures around 2 by 2 meters and is comprised of 34 individual pieces. Each front-facing polygon has 4 tabs which are bent back using a press bend and these sit off a surface to provide the topographical variation. Each polygon also has a subtle center fold which provides different lighting qualities. All the perforations have been done by plasma cutting technology.
Through Cardiff University’s efforts in developing community engagement initiatives in Grangetown, the proposed client, Well-Grangetown, have acknowledged the need to drive social and economic developments in the area. A new facility in Grangetown needs to engage the entire demographic of all ethnic and social backgrounds, specifically young families, and provide a service for the well-being of the Grangetown community.
Northern Park Access Route
Well Grangetown has identified two sites that could be developed for a community engagement hub that promotes well-being and focuses on preventative care and complements nearby existing medical facilities, like the new Grangetown Medical Centre. This new hub should provide areas that can accommodate health services and provide a base for external health visits from local practitioners without being their permanent base.
Public Cafe and Gallery Link
The facility should provide core public services. The facility should also provide public health education through short courses and educational health-related events provided in a flexible environment that can evolve and develop in response to the needs of the community.
Long Section Through the Multi-function Hall
An important strength of this new centre would be its potential for self-sufficiency and the manner in which the community engages with the new facility. This will aim to be through temporary, ‘pop-up’ events designed to accommodate health promotion events and activities. The pop up events space’s attraction is similar to the attraction of a German market in a town or a small festival in a park but the aim in Pop Grangetown is to attract local attention to ‘good health’ through interactive events among Grangetown residents.
The events aim to attract people of all backgrounds in Grangetown and therefore the range of events needs to be versatile. The pop-up events can be anything from extensions of the existing gallery link to individual stands or visiting donation vans or book buses.
Grangepark Well-being Centre Site Model
As a development from the atmospheric studies of the gallery I have started to explore the use of the gallery wall as a component of my architectural promenade.
An experimental exercise investigating lighting options that can be integrated within the wall has started to develop this transitional space. This model uses a light emitting polymer that absorbs natural light from the roof and emits it into the gallery space. The polymer will sit in between a thin larch cladding system and sit flush with the wall. The polymer will however provide depth and texture to the facade as well as providing natural and potentially artificial lighting through the same system.
The roads and pathways were vital to drive the design from its abstraction into a functional space as a market. The speed of the sites surroundings created the paremetric relationship with the wider context. The passing traffic and movement, which is integral to the site, also manages to twist and turn this monolithic structure away from the opening of Queensway Tunnel into Liverpool city centre. The form rises to a rectangular peak through stepped levels, created by stacked orthogonal layers where it squares off to face some of Liverpool’s greatest architecture.
Long Section Through Domed Spaces
Cross Section Through Main Market Hall
The twisted volume creates the need for the interior spaces to be domed. The repetition of these domed spaces divide up the market into its different areas. These areas make up the combination of exhibition and gallery space, as well as the space for the market stalls.
This project generated my Old Haymarket design. The idea was to create a form inspired by an existing precedent. This abstraction took its inspiration from Dresden’s New Synagogue where twists have been formed with a heavy material. The morphogenesis focuses on twisted forms and light qualities in a perforated shell. The model at this stage exists only as an abstraction.
Interior Render Concept | Twisting Volumes
Below are a few photos of the final concept model formed by rotating orthoganal layers up from a rectangular base to square top.
Intersecting planes and modularization inspired the strategy for finding the form of this morphogenesis model. A set of modularized elements make up the ‘kit of parts’ that assemble these models.
Each model creates its own unique variation on subtraction of space. These subtractions can be highlighted with different light intensities set within the form. The final model was created in acrylic allowing the spatial clarity to evolve through the planes almost as if it transcended the third dimension.
Above are a few photos of the final concept model formed by puting together a kit of parts in a completely random way. The intention of this was to see the spaces they created and how they intereacted with light.
Final Acrylic Abstract Model | Intersecting Planes