Jointly instigated by DeMontfort University Department of Interior Architecture and Design, and the Heterarchy studio, with sponsorship from Travis Perkins for the construction of the winning design. The two week project, for second year students of the BA (Hons) Interior Architecture and Design course based at the DMU Leicester Campus, has been declared an outstanding success by all who were invloved.
The brief was to design a free-standing, outdoor structure for use as a ‘chill out’ or meditation space, using sustainable timber and timber derived products as its primary construction material. The project was run over a two week period, with myself and Rosemarie regularly working with the students, alongside DMU head of Interior Design, Graham Stretton. The creative response from the students was phenomenal, demonstrating strong conceptual thinking with the ability to understand technical and constructional issues.
We were pleased to secure sponsorship for the build by Travis Perkins, showing a real commitment from them to support education and innovation within the sustainable construction sector. James Hollis, of Travis Perkins, said: ‘I’m amazed by the quality of the work and the amount they’ve done within a very short time. Every single design has something of merit, choosing just one to build is almost impossible.’
The general consensus was the quality of the work was so high, we simply woudn’t be able to choose one winner. Looking at the criteria of concept, process (the students ability to engage with professional input during the design process), buildability and presentation, we managed to get it down to a final shortlist of six (it could have been 12), with one being declared the outright winner. All six will attend a two week placement within the Heterarchy studio, when we hope to build two of the chosen designs.
A seventh design was chosen by John Coster, of community media agancy CitizensEye.org, to be developed, with the Heterachy studio, into a mobile outdoor community media hub.
All of the work will be published on the Heterarchy website. We are aiming to build two of the chosen designs during April 2010.