Gateway goes for Guild Social Housing, Preston - winner announced
RCKarchitects has been selected as the winner of the Gateway goes for Guild Social Housing competition. They will work with Community Gateways, Preston’s largest housing association to deliver a social housing development in Preston city for occupation in 2012, to coincide with and celebrate Preston Guild 2012.
Preston Guild is a famous and unique celebration with more than 800 years of tradition. The Guild dates back to the granting of Preston's first Charter by King Henry in 1179. Linking the city's glorious heritage and past with its ambitions for the future, the Guild is Preston's most important and historic event and is held every 20 years. The next Guild is in 2012 with the theme of “Innovation and Creativity”.
Launched in September 2009, the competition invited Architects to develop innovative design proposals for a social housing development in the centre of Preston, where people would aspire to live. The winning scheme, with an emphasis on design quality and energy efficiency, was to be a project demonstrating that affordable does not equate to ordinary, and act as an exemplar for future social housing developments in Preston and elsewhere. The competition attracted seventy four entries to the anonymous open first stage from which a short list of four teams were invited to attend an interview to expand on their first stage submission and discuss their working methods with members of the Assessment Panel. The other teams selected to take part in the interview stage were:
Conran & Partners, London
KOSI Architects, Chichester
Original Field of Architecture, Oxford
In selecting RCKarchitects the Jury Panel had the following comments to make:
This was a good team presentation from a Practice that has relevant experience of housing in the Region and a good balance of skills and past track record of working with RSL’s. The two lead Architects both fit the ethos of Community Gateway and the local community and gave a clear indication that they would listen to the local residents and be comfortable working with them. The presentation was very sincere and the team gave the impression that this would be a special project for them.
The Panel especially liked the focus on using local consultants and constructors, and the opportunities that the latter would afford for young people in the area to gain apprenticeships and employment. The house plans were well designed and suitable for the BME community, and the team had obviously got a good grasp of the site which was reflected in a well presented analysis. The issue of parking was handled ingeniously by bringing the cars into the garden spaces.
Dave Warlow, Community Gateways said: ‘‘Throughout the Gateway Goes for Guild competition we have been overwhelmed by the responses and the quality of the submissions sent to us. RCKa have, with their proposal shown a thorough understanding of what CGA was looking for in this project. We look forward to working with them and local residents over the coming months.
We would also like to thank RIBA for co-ordinating the competition, helping CGA contribute towards what should be a Preston Guild to remember in 2012.
Councillor Ken Hudson, Leader of the Council and Chair of the Guild Committee said: “This is a great idea and we are delighted that Community Gateway are creating a lasting legacy for the 2012 Guild. This is an important national project and there has been interest from right around the World. New, affordable housing is very much needed in Preston and these new homes will include the very latest in design and energy efficiency. It’s very exciting and we can’t wait to see the final designs.”