Architects have been chosen for the University of Central Lancashire’s (UCLan) new £60 million civic square and student support hub.
Designs by Hawkins Brown, which has offices in London and Manchester, were chosen by judges out of seven shortlisted entries in a competition run by UCLan in conjunction with the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
Furthermore, a series of exhibitions run alongside the competition saw Hawkins Brown’s concept received the most positive comments from the public.
The designs feature a pavilion café bar, a biodiverse roof, large glass façade and underfoot LED lighting, with the idea of ‘threads’ present to draw on Preston’s past in textiles and its future in aerospace electronics.
After being victorious in the competition, Hawkins Brown will now deliver a final proposal that will take into account feedback from the judges, university students and staff, along with members of the public.
Part of the design team will be lighting and art design firm Jason Bruges and landscape architects Plincke.
UCLan’s vice chancellor, Professor Mike Thomas, commented: “This is a landmark project which will enhance Preston’s landscape, and all the shortlisted architects provided a skilled and unique response.
“We’d like to thank everyone who submitted feedback as the comments helped shape the judging panel’s final decision, and it was Hawkins\Brown’s winning design concept which drew the most positive attention.“
He added that the public were particularly supportive of the curved glass façade and the idea of the pavilion café bar, supporting the use of the square for all.
Hawkins Brown partner Roger Hawkins commented: “We are tremendously excited about getting started on this project, testing some of our initial design ideas with students and staff from UCLan and with people from the City of Preston.“
The civic square and student support centre form part of UCLan’s £200m masterplan to redevelop its Preston campus.