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'Forgotten Spaces' final for Architecture Students

Five Architecture students from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) have been shortlisted for the final of a competition run by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).

Current student Kate Nicholson and graduates John Bridge, Joe Cook, Keith Tasker and Emma McQuillan are finalists in RIBA’s Forgotten Spaces Competition.

A collaborative effort between RIBA North West, Preston City Council, Lancashire County Council, UCLan and the Eric Wright Group, the competition asks: How would you bring the area under a flyover to life? How could a disused car park be made beautiful? What potential lies in neglected parks, empty buildings, spaces hidden away or on our rooftops?

Second year student Kate has proposed to build a 28 metre arch to signify the beginning of the Lancaster Canal.
She said: “Considering I have just completed my second year studying architecture, I was thrilled to find my proposal had been shortlisted. Seeing my work on the Architects Journal website was very exciting. I can't wait to find out what happens in November.

The arch will house an exhibition of weather and is described as a ‘journey through the layers of the sky.’ Within the arch there is a maze suspended on tension wires which give the impression that it is floating. Below the maze a wall of water cascades 16 metres down through the space.

Kate added: “The canal is a relic of Preston’s rich industrial past and as with all the waterways in Britain, once an essential industrial link. It is a forgotten space with a forgotten history and through my proposal it will be discovered once more.”

UCLan graduate, John Bridge, who works at Kirkham based Croft Goode, has proposed to develop the Miley Tunnel site. This forgotten space used to be a junction between a ‘gravity’ railway linking Longridge to Preston Town Centre and a canal also linking a rural area north of Garstang to Preston.

He said: “My proposal for this forgotten site is to accommodate a multiple of single person living units that could take advantage from the dense urban amenities and infrastructure surrounding the site.”

Forgotten Spaces, which has successfully taken place in London, Newcastle and Sheffield, seeks out redundant city spaces and invites innovative design proposals for re-use and regeneration.

The 2013 competition gives entrants the option to consider specific sites put forward by Preston City Council's Planning Department as spaces that could be made a part of the community, or select their own site.