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Exclusive: winner revealed in BBC Television Centre kiosk contest

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Draisci Studio has beaten four other practices with its design for a 28m² kiosk on the BBC Television Centre site in west London

The practice, founded by AJ 40 Under 40 star Francesco Draisci, was selected ahead of David Kohn Architects, Roz Barr Architects, Studio Weave and Gort Scott Architects in the invited contest.

Its design for a red drum-like kiosk will be built next to the Grade II-listed Studio 1, and will contain a coffee shop and florist, and is intended to be an ‘exciting, permanent intervention into an important area of the Television Centre forecourt’.

The project is backed by developer Stanhope and partner Mitsui Fudosan UK, which are leading the huge redevelopment of the former BBC Television Centre site at White City.

Draisci Studio, based in north London, will work in collaboration with AHMM, which is masterplanning the wider scheme and helped organise the competition. 

The scheme was chosen unanimously by the competition judges. A spokesman said: ‘It was felt that the red drum provided a strong focus for the pavilion within the forecourt setting. The design was well developed and addressed the pragmatic brief, with particular thought given to its manufacture and future flexibility.

‘The elegance of the scheme and breadth of ideas at a large and small scale was particularly enjoyed.’

The kiosk is expected to be installed this September, and will be built as part of the first phase of the development, which includes office and residential buildings.

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio - oculus section

The architect’s view - Francesco Draisci

Our proposal is for a kiosk that has civic dignity and its own distinctive character, in which structure and ornament coincide. The design aims at creating a generous kiosk that welcomes people under its canopy and encourages them to sit around it.

The round shape has no front or rear, allowing the social ‘activation’ of marginal corners of the site. Subtly referencing the technology of TV transmission, (being next to BBC studio 1) still based on simple lines that have the power to generate complex visions and illusion of depth, the design plays with the same sense of wonder, creating a rich architecture made of one repeated simple element.

A thin linear profile of appropriate proportion and scale is multiplied in a rigorous array around a 6m circle to form an architecture with a dynamic pattern, that appears when moving around.

The pattern becomes more intriguing as opposite sides of the same element are treated with different finishes. Such simple optical trick will create an eye-catching architecture, that will stand out against the plain brick facade of the BBC Studio 1.

The robust walls are visually permeable while still allowing a degree of privacy. All main components are made of steel, produced off-site and easily assembled on site.

The accessories, mainly made of timber, are bolted onto the outer structure to create shelves and seats, while services are supported by the inner structure and exposed for easy maintenance.

The 28m² interior is maintained open and flexible, allowing an easy fit-out of counters and shelves, to adapt to different tenancy scenarios, with possibilities ranging from mini art gallery to boutique retail, flower and coffee shop.

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio

WINNER: kiosk scheme by Draisci Studio - section

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