100 Entries from 21 countries all over the world were received by RIBA and Vauxhall One, the Business Improvement District.
Architects and Landscape Designers worldwide were asked to put their ‘High Line – High Level Thinking Caps on!’ to design the Public Realm and they did not disappoint.
Erect Architecture and J&L Gibbons are both young, talented English practices with an innovative design perspective on London. Their proposal was quirky and fun, yet very implementable. They demonstrated a clear understanding of the historical precedent of Vauxhall, with the Handel Pleasure Gardens and reinterpreted this in a really 21st Century way. They made the green connections between the Vauxhall Parks and Rail arches sing with sing with delight using innovative rain gardens and street planting.
They showed they wanted to create a real sense of place, whilst using the best of what Vauxhall has to offer with its bars, galleries and night-life.
The Judging Panel, which included Doreen Lawrence of the Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, Sue Illman, President of the Landscape Institute, Stephen Crisp, Head Gardener to the US Ambassador and Christopher Woodward of the Garden Museum, all voted for the Erect proposal because it really suited and reflected Vauxhall’s rich and colourful diversity.
Chris Law, Public Realm and Development Director for the Vauxhall BID commented: “All the entries have been outstanding but the erect / J&L Gibbons entry was really special. They really looked at the brief and context and came up with a highly imaginative solution. Rain gardens mix with strangley pruned trees to create a real Cabinet of Curiosities. So Vauxhall! Who would have thought that sustainable urban drainage could be so cool!”
Now erect architecture and J&L Gibbons will work with Vauxhall One to deliver the designs on the ground, through an urban design framework. An online gallery of all entries can be viewed at http://www.ribacompetitions.com/vauxhallthemissinglink/gallery.html