AJ exclusive: Niall McLaughlin wins college chapel contest
Niall McLaughlin Architects has won the RIBA competition to design a new college chapel in Oxfordshire, seeing off an impressive shortlist including Massimiliano Fuksas and Ushida Findlay Architects
The practice also beat fellow finalists Terry Pawson Architects and Sarah Hare Architects to land the project for the ‘training’ chapel – part of a larger expansion programme at the Ripon College campus, Cuddesdon (all the finalist schemes are pictured above).
David Morley, the RIBA architectural adviser to the judging panel, described the winning proposals as both ‘poetic and technically sophisticated’..
He said: ‘The elliptical shape, with its two focal points on the altar and lectern, is a brilliantly simple, innovative response to the traditional “college” configuration for a chapel.
‘This simple idea is just part of an approach that is both poetic - the first architectural image was of a buoyant, tethered boat - and technically sophisticated proposing materials such as wicker rainscreen; CNC cutting and Phase Change Material.’
He added: ‘The competition inspired wide interest from the UK and internationally and the Ripon College community were bold in their openness to consider un-traditional designs.’
The new chapel will serve two interconnected communities: the residential and non-residential college community; and the Sisters of a small religious community, resident on campus.
Other proposed developments on the site include New Teaching and Residential Facilities for Students and the Begbroke Community of Nuns - all being designed by Newcastle-based Hopper Howe Sadler.
Watch the construction of the new chapel on the live webcam.