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RIBA Special Recognition Award for contribution to London 2012 Olympic Games

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Featured in 'New Architects 3' survey of the best British architects established since 2005

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165 Caledonian Rd, London, N1 0SL  

 

Halftime at Cambridge United FC a transformational interim public art project for the Abbey Lounge Supporters Club.

The site is located behind the North stand of the proposed Cambridge Community Stadium development. As the nature of activities that take place here is planned to evolve, part of our brief was to encourage people to use and think about the location in a different way, encouraging a new audience of people beyond the existing match day supporters to visit the Supporters Club to help both increase revenue opportunities through sales and events and position the location as a revived destination within the wider community.

It was clear the existing frontage was in desperate need of a renovation. Inspired by US freeway/strip architecture such as that found at the iconic BEST Products Stores, the design uses a supergraphic cedar rainscreen 'billboard wrap' to form a skin over the existing building. A relatively inexpensive way to transform the appearance of the entire structure. This wrap conceals half of the old frontage, leaving the other half exposed, signifying the halfway point the site has reached in terms of its development.

 

A graphic swoosh descends from 3m above the existing roof line, from the corner nearest to the ticket gates, creating a dynamic perspectival visual impact. Alongside the timber cladding, improvements were made to the entrance doors and relocated smoking shelter. Collectively turning what was a rather grotty low rise block hidden behind a carwash into a distinctive representation of the site's transformation.

Planning permission was granted in 2015 and a local contractor RG Carter appointed to deliver the build, taking the project from inception to completion within 3 weeks. Visiting the pre season 'meet the players' day event held at the Stadium on the 24th July 2016, the new frontage was a definite talking point. With one fan nicknaming it the ski slope!

Location: Cambridge United FC, Newmarket Road, Cambridge
Completed : 2016
Client : Grosvenor
Contractor : RG Carter