Interrobang has won a charette-style competition to design a £1.8 million pop-up market and cultural hub in Ilford, east London
The emerging practice was chosen ahead of bids by Asif Khan; Jestico + Whiles with Goldfinger Factory; and Greig & Stephenson to win the commission supported by the mayor of London’s Good Growth Fund.
The Spark project – supported by meanwhile-use provider Mercato – will transform an existing car park next to Ilford town hall into a covered commercial and community facility featuring a rooftop hydroponic farm and education space.
The five-year scheme will also convert the Grade II-listed town hall to provide 50 affordable workspaces while creating a workshop within a nearby Salvation Army Hostel and creative workspaces in neighbouring Janice Mews across the road.
Interrobang, a young trans-disciplinary architecture and engineering practice co-founded by former Studio Weave director Maria Smith, was selected following a charette process intended to give emerging and smaller design practices a chance to bid for mayoral-supported projects.
According to a statement from the mayor’s office: ‘The process encourages the client to engage with the ideas of the design teams rather focusing primarily on fees. In addition, it also allows the engagement between client and design team at an early stage, which helps the design team respond more effectively to the client’s needs.’
Deputy mayor for planning, regeneration and skills, Jules Pipe said: ‘I’m really pleased Mercato has taken this innovative approach to selecting an architect for this project …
‘This is a great example of how a creative approach to procurement can support innovative projects and help realise Sadiq’s ambition for good growth which benefits Londoners of all backgrounds.’
The full shortlist
- Interrobang (winner)
- Asif Khan
- Jestico + Whiles with Goldfinger Factory
- Greig & Stephenson