The project is born out of the existing piers and buildings. Like a naval vessel, a curved basement embraces the diverse elements of Birnbeck Island.
Constructed five metres beneath the main pier, the basement is accessible from a ramp near the gate of the island. Its sequence of spaces links all the buildings on the island from below. The vessel design counterpoints the new tall buildings, in plan oriented following the orthogonal reference system created through existing signs. Two different materials divide these building surfaces: concrete at the bottom and planking at the top. The method of occupying the void synthesises diverse schemes: tower, linear, cantilever and gate. In each of their narrow frontages, at the top, a big window marks the seascape creating a panorama like multitude of lighthouses.
Time: Oct 2007
Place: Birnbeck Island, Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset, UK
Clients: RIBA, Urban Splash
Architect: Antonino Cardillo
Computer-generated imagery: Antonino Cardillo
Text: Antonino Cardillo
English translator: Charles Searson
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XING RIHAN (ed.)
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worldarchitecturenews.com, London, 22 Jan 2008.