Opened to coincide with Liverpool's appointment as European Capital of Culture, the design academy provides facilities for a wide range of programs including architecture, fine arts, textiles, graphics and printing. The building is designed for energy efficiency, with renewable technologies accounting for 10% of annual energy demand.
The five storey concrete frame structure is waved on plan, with saw toothed windows from first floor up on the two long elevations. A full height glazed atrium forms a dramatic "cut-through," permitting sightlines across the building. Open-plan at ground floor level, the atrium's upper storeys are internally articulated with segments of the floor slabs filled in at varying locations. Lightweight cantilever steel scissor stairs connect the ascending floor plates.
Long term flexibility of use is a design priority. We engineered each studio as an entirely column free space that may be adapted according to specific study needs. Concertinaed terraced seating in the 350 capacity lecture hall is engineered to fold away easily, transforming the space into an open exhibition venue.