In yet another change of direction, the Prince of Wales' architecture school is to concentrate on urbanism and the regeneration of cities - 'urban transformations' - rather than the narrower issue of housing it pledged to champion when it rebranded itself last year.
The school, under the banner of the PoW Foundation for Architecture and the Urban Environment, has also come up with a new logo - a silhouette of a modern, high-rise urban city-scape. And it has produced a new document explaining its mission towards 'a more humane urbanism' after it moves into its Matthew Lloyd Architects-designed warehouse premises in Shoreditch later this year.
Foundation president Prince Charles, in a foreword to the document, says he hopes that the new-look foundation will 'become a meeting place for studying, discussing and disseminating the very best practice in the art of building and regenerating our neighbourhoods, towns and cities.'
A formal announcement about the new programme is likely in two weeks' time. The successful foundation programme will survive the move from Regents Park, though the exact format of the graduate programme is unclear. But there is no doubt that following the bloodletting last year, which saw the departure of director Richard Hodges and other teachers within the school, a new tone is apparent at the institute. Earlier this month Ted Cullinan, no genuflector to former Princely strictures on the necessity of Classicism, lectured at the school. One of its fiercest critics, Martin Richardson, is currently exhibiting there, along with Neave Brown, Rick Mather and John Miller, in an exhibition called 'Four Camden Architects'.
One foundation insider told aj that there were exciting times ahead, and that broadening the curriculum to embrace all aspects of urban change, not merely housing, would go a long way to restoring the school to intellectual health. Its ambitions to become a formally recognised school have suffered setbacks in the past, with a failure to win riba recognition in 1997.
Meanwhile, former director Hodges has become an adviser to the Albanian government and is currently working in Tirana.