Hampshire Festival of Architecture 2014 | A feast of skill (and cladding!)
We popped into the incredibly light and airy Winchester Discovery Centre to go and see the compelling Live, Work, Play Architecture Exhibition which is showcasing a plethora of talented Hampshire-based architects. The exhibition is staged by RIBA Hampshire and demonstrates a healthy mix of how to meet the brief of a dwelling in which to live, work and play in the modern era. With over 100 projects featured it’s a fascinating exposé on the work being produced and created in the South of England… as well as emblazoned proof that cladding of all forms is well and truly ‘in’ with architects!
We happened to park next to one of the developments featured in the exhibition: ‘St Valentines Close’ by T2 Architects. We were struck with how well it suited the surrounding Victorian and Edwardian terraced streets whilst affording contemporary living. More or less exactly as stated in the exhibition: ‘a contemporary reinterpretation of the surrounding vernacular with 21st century materials and construction technology’.
It’s a mixed-use redevelopment of a former commercial laundry site on the edge of a conservation area providing 14 new houses and 300m2 of office space completed late 2013.
Generous front doors open out onto covered entry porches with side storage and low front walls. There is a simple rhythm and repetition of design, elevations and materials throughout the mixed development with pitched slate roofs, projecting entry porches and bay windows.
The simple palette of grey and wood makes the design seem understated and welcoming whilst providing a stylish urban solution to living centrally in an area which is on the whole heavily conserved.
In fact, Winchester seems to have lots of quirky interesting builds around the place (like the one below which was for sale!). We look forward to going back soon to do a real street tour of Winchester’s urban buildings…