The London Festival of Architecture (LFA) has launched an international contest for a series of small £6,500 landscaped spaces throughout the City of London
The competition seeks ‘safe, durable and low-cost’ concepts for a number of public ‘parklets’ to occupy kerbside parking bays across the Square Mile.
The project, supported by the City of London Corporation, aims to boost public spaces throughout the area where ambitious plans will see half of the streets given ‘pedestrian priority’ by 2044. The winning schemes will be constructed in key locations in time for the LFA’s opening on 1 June.
LFA director Tamsie Thomson said: ‘Harnessing London’s amazing design talent to enliven London’s public realm is fundamental to our mission at the London Festival of Architecture. Once again we’re delighted to be working in partnership with the City of London Corporation as our exciting and fruitful competitions activities continue to develop.
‘As the LFA explores the theme of “boundaries” in 2019, the City Parklets project promises not only to bring joy and colour to the City next summer, but also to provoke thinking about how architects can bridge the gap between disused space and productive use.’
Chris Hayward, chair of the City of London’s planning and transportation committee, said: ‘As we continue to upgrade and enliven the City’s streets and spaces, we look forward to working with the London Festival of Architecture once again on innovative planning solutions, while providing young professionals in the built environment industry with the opportunity to use their creativity to support our healthier street model.
‘I hope very much that their designs inspire the public to see City spaces in a new light.’
The latest competition comes a year after the LFA invited proposals for a series of public benches in the City of London. The contest was won by a number of emerging London architects and practices including Patrick McEvoy and Nicholas Kirk Architects.
The City of London Parklets project will deliver a series of kerbside public spaces where visitors and local workers can ‘rest, relax and admire the City’.
Proposals must provide some form of public amenity, such as seating or landscaping and should be low maintenance, free-standing and responsive to the local environment.
Interested teams must submit a 300-word written text explaining their interest in the project along with a 200-word practice description and biographies. Six shortlisted teams will then receive £250 each to develop design concepts.
Judges include Thomson, City public realm and open space leads Simon Glynn and Patrick Hegarty, Jennifer Dixon of AECOM, and Philippa Stockley from the Evening Standard.
The overall winners, to be notified in mid-March, will receive £6,500 each to design and deliver their scheme.
The deadline for applications is midday, 7 February.
How to apply
Visit the competition website for more information