Design Competition for James Stirling’s Florey Building
Competition. [Oxford] U.K.
metalocus, PEDRO NAVARRO
The Queen’s College, Oxford announces the launch of the Florey Design Competition. The College seeks a dedicated team to restore and add new facilities to James Stirling’s modernist masterpiece. The challenge: to use advances in technology to update the building, provide modern facilities and achieve exemplary energy design.
The most charismatic of James Stirling's surviving buildings; the Florey Building has been beset with infamous technical and practical failings since it opened forty years ago. Despite this, the building has a cult presence in Oxford: a modernist's riposte to a city defined by traditional architectural masterworks.
Expressions of interest by 9th October 2013 please.
This is a two-stage competition. The first stage invites a wide Expression of Interest from which a shortlist of five to seven teams will be selected. We welcome EOIs from multi-disciplinary teams, which should include but are not limited to, an architect (who will act as the lead consultant), a conservation architect specialising in 20th Century non-traditional buildings, a landscape architect, a dedicated sustainability expert, a structural engineer, a services engineer (M&E), and a cost consultant.
This team should be:
appropriate in size and skills for the project
sympathetic to modernist architecture
good practical problem-solvers
creative and innovative in achieving an excellent carbon profile
Teams responding to the EOI must have the necessary expertise to complete the project within the project constraints, which include: design, budget, programme and site. For further details please click here.
The Florey Building (1971) was designed by James Stirling, one of the most inventive and often controversial, British architects of the post-war period. The building, which provides accommodation for undergraduates and postgraduates, was commissioned by Lord Howard Florey, the Queen’s College Provost and a Nobel Prize winner, who sought ‘the best building by the best architect to attract the best students and also research funding’. Architectural historians often group the Florey with Stirling’s other two university buildings of this phase of his career: The Engineering Department at Leicester University (1959) and Cambridge University’s History Faculty and Library Building (1964). However, the Florey remains distinctive in its response to context: the river setting, endlessly captured and replayed in its glittering, faceted courtyard façade. The American critic, Amanda Reeser Lawrence in her book James Stirling Revisionary Modernist has described the Florey’s design as, ‘...perhaps the purest moment of release – Stirling’s “wildest” moment, in which he strays further from anything else in either his own work or the work of others.’ The annual Stirling Prize for Architecture commemorates James Stirling’s original talent and is now Britain’s leading architectural prize. English Heritage listed the Florey Building Grade II in 2009.