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Competition: The Portsmouth Phoenix

Contest site: Leamington House and Horatio House, Portsmouth
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Project Compass has launched an open call for participants for a three-day workshop investigating housing solutions in Portsmouth

The workshop, from 4-6 March, is open to architects and planners aged 40 and under, and will focus on the site of two city-centre residential tower blocks which have been scheduled for demolition amid safety concerns following the Grenfell disaster.

Participants will develop their proposals for the site during the workshop – to be held at the University of Portsmouth School of Architecture – and receive mentorship from Bell Phillips Architects, Mikhail Riches, Proctor & Matthews Architects, RCKa and Ruth Butler Architect.

In its brief, Project Compass says the towers, Leamington House and Horatio House, ‘have had their cladding stripped and been evacuated, post-Grenfell. Following survey investigations, the towers are now scheduled for demolition – leaving the city’s housing stock reduced, although social housing demand continues to rise.

‘This new housing paradigm establishes the context for The Portsmouth Phoenix competition … This unique design masterclass will provide a matchless opportunity to explore exemplary and sustainable future urban housing, engaging the public while contributing knowledge towards the site’s development.’

The island city of Portsmouth in Hampshire is witnessing a surge in its population which has placed increased pressure on the availability of high-quality housing at affordable prices. The city is home to a major port and naval base and has a population of 205,400 with a greater density than that of London.

The workshop comes some three years after Project Compass held an ‘elephant cage’ competition focusing on ways to improve a series of proposed sea defences surrounding Portsmouth.

Representing 18 hours of core CPD, the workshop will include a site visit, team composition session, evening social, design development day with lectures, interim reviews and final presentations.

Applications should include two A4 pages featuring a CV and written reasons for wishing to attend the event. Selected teams will receive subsistence but not accommodation.

The deadline for applications is midday, 10 February. 

How to apply

Visit the competition website for more information

Contact details

Email: katie.wilmot@port.ac.uk

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