Maidstone High Street Competition, England: RIBA Contest

Maidstone Design Competition, Winner, Building, RIBA, Architects, Designer, Image

Maidstone High Street Competition : Images

Public Realm Design competition, England, UK

9 Jun 2009

Maidstone High Street Contest – Winner

Maidstone High Street

Letts Wheeler Architects has won the competition to re-design Maidstone High Street as part of a circa £4m public realm improvement project in the town centre.

The first stage of the competition attracted 76 submissions in response to Maidstone Borough Council’s call for fresh, innovative and viable design proposals that will be capable of transforming the High Street and enhancing Maidstone’s distinctiveness as Kent’s County Town. Following an anonymous assessment of the Stage 1 submissions, Letts Wheeler Architects were short-listed together with (in alphabetical order): Conran & Partner Ltd; Douglas and King Architects; Terence O’Rourke Ltd and Townshend Landscape Architects.

The five short-listed teams were invited to refine their design proposals following feedback from the Stage 1 assessment and present their ideas to the Judging Panel at a final interview. The Judging Panel consisted of Elected and Executive Members of Maidstone Borough Council and Kent County Council, together with Robert Sakula (Ash Sakula Architects) acting as the RIBA Adviser. The Panel admired Letts Wheeler’s clutter free, deceptively simple scheme and the care and thought the team had expended in revising their proposals. The Jury Panel felt confident that Letts Wheeler’s approach demonstrated they will be able to work with the client body and other stakeholders to deliver a solution which will successfully resolve the competing demands on the High Street. Cllr. Malcolm Greer (Maidstone Borough Council, Cabinet Member for Regeneration) commented: ‘We selected Letts Wheeler as we felt they can deliver the High Street that Maidstone wants. Now we will talk to the team to develop their ideas further and carry out consultation to add details to the design’.

6 Apr 2009

Shortlist announced : Maidstone High Street Open Design Competition

The short-list is announced for the Maidstone High Street Open Design Competition. Through creative and innovative use of design and public art, Maidstone Borough Council invited multi-disciplinary teams to submit initial ideas and approaches for a circa £4m public realm improvement project in Maidstone’s town centre.

The first stage of the competition attracted 76 submissions from architect / landscape architect-led teams based in the UK, Bulgaria, Eire, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United States of America.

The Judging Panel consisted of a Head of College from the University of the Creative Arts, Elected and Executive Members of Maidstone Borough Council and Kent County Council, with Robert Sakula (Ash Sakula Architects) acting as the RIBA Adviser. To be short-listed, Competitors needed to have proposed viable schemes which struck a balance between creativity and pragmatism, with fresh, innovative ideas that will be capable of transforming the High Street and enhancing Maidstone’s distinctiveness as Kent’s County Town. Following the anonymous assessment of the design proposals, the five short-listed teams (alphabetical):

Conran & Partner Ltd
Douglas and King Architects
Letts Wheeler Architects
Terence O’Rourke Ltd
Townshend Landscape Architects

Cllr. Malcolm Greer (Maidstone Borough Council, Cabinet Member for Regeneration) commented: ‘We were delighted that so many designers were interested in the project to reinvigorate the High Street and rebalance the competing needs of pedestrians, vehicles and traffic. We had a fantastic response – the overall quality of the submissions was very high and there were some stunning design proposals’.

The five short-listed teams have been invited to take on board feedback from the Stage 1 assessment and refine their design proposals, which will be subject to public display in Maidstone from 27 April to 5 May 2009. Comments will be collated to help inform the Jury Panel’s decision when they reconvene to hear the teams present their design proposals in mid-May 2009.


To see all listed projects on a single map please follow this link.

English Architecture

Kent Buildings

English Architects

15 Jan 2009

Launch of International Open Design Competition for the redesign of Maidstone’s High Street

The RIBA Competitions Office is pleased to announce the launch of a new two-stage, International Open Design Competition on behalf of Maidstone Borough Council. Through creative and innovative use of design and public art, the competition is seeking ideas and approaches for a circa GBP £4m public realm improvement project for the High Street in Maidstone’s town centre.

Submissions are invited from multi-disciplinary design teams, which must be led by a practising, registered architect or landscape architect. A Judging Panel will select up to five design proposals from the anonymous Stage 1 submissions to go through to the Stage 2 of the competition. Anonymity will then be lifted, with each short-listed team receiving an equal honorarium payment of GBP £5,400 (+VAT) to further develop their design proposal. The schemes will be subject to public display and consultation prior to presentations to the Judging Panel at a final interview.

The winning design proposal will need to have a clear public art focus that will revitalise the High Street and its environs, enhance Maidstone’s distinctiveness as the County Town of Kent and improve the town centre’s physical and visual connectivity to the River Medway. The winning scheme will need to be a practical, deliverable solution that will offer long-term sustainability and successfully rebalance the competing needs of pedestrians, vehicles and traffic. It should reinvigorate the town centre, as a pleasant place to shop, visit, live and work.

For details of how to register for the Maidstone High Street Competition and to view the full Competition Brief please visit http://highstreet.digitalmaidstone.co.uk
Please note that registrations will close on 26 February 2009, and the deadline for Stage 1 design submissions is 2.00pm on 5 March 2009.

Maidstone High Street Competition information from RIBA 150109

The RIBA Competitions Office offers a tailored competition management service delivering excellence in design. Further details: www.architecture.com/competitions

RIBA Competition : Cheltenham

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Maidstone High Street Competition – page

Website: England