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Turner Architects' pier wins Sidmouth ideas contest

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Turner Architects has won an open ideas competition for the Port Royal and the Eastern Town area of Sidmouth in Devon

The south London studio’s proposal for a new sandstone-clad pier was chosen over rival shortlisted entries by HLM Architects, landscape architect Rosie Madden and Bartlett graduates Tom Cubitt & Naomi De Barr.

Reconstructing a long-lost waterfront structure, the winning scheme proposes a new venue, theatre, museum and coastal viewing platform for the town.

The full shortlist

  • Turner Architects (Winner)
  • HLM Architects
  • Rosie Madden
  • Tom Cubitt & Naomi De Barr

Studio director Paul Turner commented: ‘We are very excited to have won, this has been a great opportunity for us to design something that not only celebrates our beautiful coastline but also contributes to the ongoing debate around how our communities and environments, both natural and built, engage with each other.’

Open to architects, designers and students of related disciplines – the contest sought concepts to reinvent the coastal resort which is the gateway to the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.

Following the River Sid, the competition site has been the subject of several redevelopment visions over the years and is currently owned by a number of stakeholders including Devon County Council, East Devon District Council, South West Water.

Landmarks within the 8km² area include the disused Drill Hall community centre, the Swan Pub, Sidmouth lifeboat station and the Alma bridge which was damaged by floods four years ago.

HLM’s proposal featured a new pedestrianised area with flexible business units while Madden drew up plans for a new waterfront library, sports hub and river walk.

Cubitt and De Barr meanwhile mooted a new community market place and flood defence constructed from gabion walls.

The competition – which received 27 entries – was organised by local firm RBM Architects on behalf of the Eastern Town Partnership.

RBM director Henry Beech Mole argued the winning scheme could form the basis of a future bid to purchase land in the area from the local authority.

He said: ‘The winning entry could be a really special building, and I’m not sure I’ve seen anything like it before.

’It would be an incredible addition to the seafront in Sidmouth and we would like to congratulate Turner Architects on their winning entry.’



Source: Image by Touriste

Sidmouth Beach

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