Forgotten Spaces: Plinth by Artillery
[Tower Hamlets] Raised sculpture park on a railway viaduct
The Pinchin Street railway viaduct, owned by Network Rail, is a series of arches supporting a section of abandoned track that has long-since turned to scrubland. However, it is home to diverse wildlife (it’s a Site of Importance for Nature Conservation), while the arches are used by local business, including artistic and voluntary organizations. The site also has a colorful history, being the spot where Jack the Ripper left the remains of one of his victims, and the inspiration for Henry Moore’s war-time Shelter drawings.
Artillery architects propose the site is turned into a sculpture park. The scrubland on the upper level becomes the sculpture park itself, while the bricked-up arches are re-opened as galleries and places for educational seminars. A new lift will connect the two and provide access for the disabled.
Although primarily intended to be a local secret for Tower Hamlets residents, the excellent transportation links mean it will also be seen by many from outside the area.
Forgotten Spaces: All 20 shortlisted entries feature in a public exhibition at the National Theatre until 4 July www.nationaltheatre.org.uk