Forgotten Spaces Sheffield 2011: Shortlist – Department of Fabrication, Media and Robotics by Steven McCloy and Bongani Muchemwa
The derelict yet beautiful Old Post Office is retrofitted with a huge, high-tech atrium canopy, which provides a central public space to the department
The Department of Fabrication, Media and Robotics is a new building typology that embraces the large site to provide extensive resources to small businesses, students and artists.
Small studios and offices can be hired within a buzzing community of entrepreneurs; the department provides access to facilities and an impressive city centre location.
A large proportion of the facility is concerned with digital fabrication and product development; the opportunity for artists, designers and media companies to produce their own prototypes outside of traditional contracts will provide a huge boost to upcoming businesses.
The department endeavours to attract the attention of prominent figures in the emerging industry; and the development includes conference rooms and a large lecture theatre, it will also provide jobs and apprenticeships. At the foot is a public plaza which is fronted with retail units, reserved for businesses within the department.