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Forgotten Spaces 2011 shortlisted: The Urban Climbing Tunnel by Steve McCoy

[Lambeth] A new urban climbing tunnel giving city school children and urban thrill seekers the opportunity to experience rock climbing, abseiling and potholing in the heart of the city

The proposals utilise a currently disused air-raid shelter tunnel deep below Clapham High Street, to create a new climbing centre. The shelter’s tunnels and vertical shafts provide an unusual ready made infrastructure within which the experience of potholing and caving can be recreated deep below the city streets.

This new climbing experience would create a fantastic new activity destination as well as reconnect a forgotten piece of history with the active high street above.

This new climbing experience would create a fantastic new activity destination

At the main entrance a decorative tower is added to the existing pill box structure. This creates a dynamic presence on the High Street and a landmark of this unusual and forgotten infrastructure.

A new entrance opens on to the high street bringing interest and activity at street level to this currently blank corner. Windows are also punched through the external wall to allow views into the climbing wall and the down the vertical shaft.

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