The winning design for ‘The Wall’, a new 50m high landmark of hope, features dynamic geometry and a stunning representation of a Möbius strip, which seems to have no beginning and no end. Ramboll’s engineering simulation specialists are turning the design into a buildable proposition.
Vision for an ambitious and inspirational landmark
'The Wall of Answered Prayer' (The Wall) is a visionary project by Richard Gamble, former Leicester City Football Club Chaplain, to build a colossal national landmark.
Richard's idea is to provoke an on-going conversation around the purpose and value of prayer. The message that Jesus is alive and answers prayer will be represented by one million bricks with each and every brick telling a unique story. The sheer scale of The Wall in a prominent location will place the landmark and its message at the forefront of the nation’s consciousness. This piece of public art will be designed to stand for generations.
10 things about The Wall
Funding and costs
All the funding for The Wall will be from private investment. Some of this funding will come from major donors and some will be crowdfunded from individual donors.
The campaign to build The Wall was launched on the Kickstarter crowd funding website in 2016. During the 39 day funding period 692 backers pledged £47,215, exceeding the £45,000 goal for seed funding.
In the long term any profits will be used for social housing or to support Christian organisations.
The winning design
The seed funding was used to run a global competition with the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) to come up with a winning design and to create the website database of the million answered prayers.
The competition received 134 entries from 24 countries. In the final stage of the competition in May 2019, an expert panel selected Snug Architect's design from five shortlisted entries.
Judges were impressed by the use of a Möbius strip concept to create a continuous loop of wall that allows visitors to process through a gravity defying triumphant arch, before encircling the wall. It will confound expectations of what a structure commissioned by the Christian church may be like. The arch, with seemingly no support where the strip curves and twists, will be over 40m high with an 80m span. This will make it larger in scale than Antony Gormley's Angel of the North, which is 20m tall, with wings measuring 54m across.
Engineering simulation and structural analysis
Carl Brookes, Director - Engineering Simulation at Ramboll said: "Absolutely delighted to be working with Snug on delivering this national monument. We are thrilled to have the opportunity to develop the challenging engineering required to make the truly radical and gravity defying form of the Mobius strip reality. Undoubtedly this will be an inspirational, thought-provoking and iconic structure for generations to see and visit."
The Wall will be built in a highly visible location at Coleshill Manor, Brimingham next to the M6 / M42 motorway junction, the planned route of the HS2 high speed rail line and below the flightpath serving Birmingham airport in the West Midlands, UK. In excess of three hundred thousand people will see it each day and it will remain in the national consciousness, a modern response to the Christian heritage of the country.
The start of construction is due in 2020, with completion aimed ahead of the 2022 Commonwealth Games to be held in Birmingham.
The Wall delivery team is as follows.
- Snug Architects – Architect & team lead
- Ramboll – Engineering and analysis
- Gleeds - Client advisor
- UBU Design Ltd - Landscape architects
- Ridge - Cost consultants