Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

CABE attacks plan to demolish Kidderminster Piano building

  • Comment

CABE has condemned Lyons + Sleeman + Hoare's plan to demolish Kidderminster's much-loved Piano building and replace it with a new cinema designed by the practice.

CABE's design review committee has called on Kidderminster council to refuse permission for the scheme - arguing that the new three-storey cinema building is of insufficient quality to justify the demolition.

The five-storey red brick Piano building lies in the centre of Kidderminster between the Staffordshire & Worcester Canal and the River Stour. In plan it resembles a grand piano and although not listed has strong local support.

CABE said of Lyons + Sleeman + Hoare's proposed replacement scheme that it 'has not been well enough considered in urban design terms' and that it presents a 'forbidding' exterior presence.

'It does nothing to convince us, as a piece of urban design or as a piece of architecture, that it is a worthy replacement for an existing building of acknowledged quality, ' CABE said. And it added that the scheme ignored a crucial opportunity to capitalise on the strong relationship between the Piano building and the neighbouring Slingfield Mills and the public spaces between them.

The cinema proposal is part of a wider project, won by Lyons + Sleeman + Hoare in 1995 - to develop Kidderminster's town centre.

The practice was not available for comment.

lCABE's design review committee has called DLA Architects' residential scheme for the Old Town Conservation Area of Kingston Upon Hull 'over-ambitious' and in contrast with its context.

And it said the design analysis did not support the proposition for a landmark tower or gateway building on the site.

The eleven-storey, residential-led mixed-use scheme includes 143 apartments on the upper floors arranged in courtyard form around a communal roof garden at third floor level. CABE said the 'formulaic apartment size and arrangement appears at odds with the varied and intricate character of the conservation area. Re-examining the context for the proposal in greater detail and relating the new building to its surroundings through an informed character appraisal would, in our view, lead to a project that is more likely to succeed.'

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.