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University of Hertfordshire

Isabelle Dore, Mahan Hafezi, Athanaslos Paraskevopoulos, Josip Pijevic, Bartlomiej Zywczak

Our proposal leverages cultural activities to ease people out of their comfort zone, breaking their social bubbles. The aim is to encourage shared experiences and long-lasting bonds.

After analysing several culturally rich areas in London, we decided to focus on the South Bank, where a site analysis revealed an unpleasant area that is deprived of sunlight during most of the day. We propose a new development on this site – a pedestrianised street with a cultural oasis at its heart. To relieve the pressure from the South Bank promenade, the development runs parallel from behind the National Theatre towards the Bernie Spain Gardens.

The current site is mostly in shadow during the day, which creates an unpleasant atmosphere in the overall highly developed area. Our proposal includes sustainable multi-purpose devices that act as lamp posts, following the sun during the day and reflecting the sunlight onto the site while powering themselves up. Then, during the night, they act as performance reflectors.

Our proposal improves the fabric of the surrounding roads by pedestrianizing them with a colourful mosaic pavement that gradually leads towards our main intervention: a multi-use space with performance areas, an amphitheatre, covered market stalls, street furniture and open breakout spaces. The idea is to provide the surrounding cultural institutions with an inclusive performance area in which they can spread and promote their art to a diverse audience, effectively breaking them out of their social bubbles.