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Mather victorious in RIBA's Worcester College Oxford contest

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Rick Mather Architects has seen off an impressive shortlist to win the RIBA Competition to design a new lecture theatre and kitchens for Worcester College, Oxford

The practice’s ‘ingenious, practical and beautiful’ scheme was selected ahead of designs by Dixon Jones, O’Donnell & Tuomey Architects, 6a Architects, Burd Haward Architects and Wright & Wright Architects.

According to an RIBA spokesman ‘the jury panel recognised the six teams had developed a rich variety of ideas in response to a demanding brief and a very constrained historic site [but] felt the Rick Mather team had demonstrated an excellent understanding of how spaces could be re-organised to improve catering provision ad that the lecture theatre design which would offer an appropriate modern counterpoint to the surrounding buildings’.

The new facilities are expected to be a focal point of the College’s Tercentenary Celebrations in 2014.      

Judge’s comment

Josephine Quinn, the college’s vice-provost said: ‘The college was thrilled with the quality and creativity of the submissions made by all six teams and we learnt a lot about architecture and about our own college through the competition process. We are very excited about the scheme proposed by Rick Mather Architects, which is ingenious, practical, and beautiful. Right at the heart of the college, it has the potential to transform the way the staff and students work, study, eat and spend time together, and to further strengthen our sense of academic community.’


Previous story (AJ 30.03.11)

Shortlist unveiled in RIBA’s Worcester College Oxford contest

Three practices previously shortlisted for the Stirling Prize have been named among the finalists in the RIBA’s Worcester College contest

Dixon Jones, O’Donnell & Tuomey Architects and Rick Mather Architects are joined by 6a Architects, Burd Haward Architects and Wright & Wright Architects in the competition to design a new lecture theatre and kitchen at the Oxford college.

The six teams will now draw up concept designs for the reworked kitchen as well as the 150-seat theatre which will sit within the grounds of the listed college and gardens.

Practices will be asked to ‘come up with proposals that integrate sensitive, high quality architecture within the truly historic setting’.

The new £3million facilities are set to open in 2014 to coincide with the College’s celebration of its 300th anniversary. 

The winner of the competition will be announced in June this year (2011).   

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