Revealed: designs by the finalists vying for Oriel College jackpot
The AJ can reveal the five shortlisted schemes in the competition to overhaul part of Oriel College at the University of Oxford
Submissions from Amanda Levete’s AL_A practice, Allies and Morrison, Caruso St John, Panter Hudspith and Wright & Wright were among more than 60 entrants to the high-profile, two-stage contest.
Worth between £5 million and £10 million, the project will see social spaces and catering facilities inserted into a wedge-shaped site lying between the college’s Grade I-listed hall and chapel – which have elements dating back to the 17th century – and a medieval wall.
Competition organiser Malcolm Reading said: ‘The teams have struck a fine balance in their submissions between showing design acumen and a clear resolution of a difficult set of problems in a constrained site.
‘Interestingly, they have all gone for quite different approaches: one puts the kitchen on the first floor and others on the ground or in the basement; likewise there are different approaches to the configuration of social spaces.
‘The submissions explore many possibilities and exhibit a range of both cautious and ambitious planning strategies.’
Wilf Stephenson, treasurer at Oriel College, added: ‘We’ve been thinking about this problem for a long time and, seeing the shortlist’s suggested designs, there are some fascinating choices to be made. The energy created by the competition is a real stimulus – we’re beginning to get a sense of how the project can really enhance the College and, hopefully, give us some of the best social spaces in Oxford.’
The winner will be announced next month.