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Canterbury students win American charette

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A group of architecture students from the University College for the Creative Arts in Canterbury - formerly the Kent Institute of Art and Design - has won this year's UK Student Design Charette.

The team scooped the top prize with a 'bold and original' design for a new public space in east London at the annual event, organised by the American Institute of Architects.

Under the guidance of John Onken - an American architect who is now based in Kingston - the students came up with a scheme (pictured) to bring 'a bit of the Alps into the heart of London'.

The team, made up of Aislinn Barrett, Kris Adelaide, Isi Etoni, Erica Esteves, Dimitrios Diavantis and Maki Matsuhashi, created an undulating square of green space, incorporating rock climbing facilities and a skate park.

Jury chairman and Architectural Revieweditor Paul Finch praised the originality of the idea. He said: 'The highest tribute to a successful experiment is that there is no need to repeat it.'

The other judges at the charette, which is now in its 12th year, included London School of Economics tutor Katherine Firth, architect Cecile Brisac and sustainable design specialist Syreeta Robinson Gayle.

Other prizes went to a joint team from Sheffield and Canterbury and a mixed group of students from Oxford Brookes, the Bartlett and Germany's Bauhaus University.

by Richard Waite

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