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Revealed: winner in Olympicopolis competition

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A team led by Allies and Morrison, with O’Donnell & Tuomey and AJ’s 2013 Emerging Woman Architect of the Year Olga Felip’s studio, has been chosen to design the new Olympicopolis

The collaboration, which also includes landscape architects Gustafson Porter, saw off four other all-star bids to land the commission for the huge cultural and education quarter on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, east London.

The 70,000m² scheme at Stratford Waterfront is set to house new outposts for the Victoria and Albert Museum, Sadler’s Wells and the University of the Arts London.

The Smithsonian Institution is also in discussions about opening its first permanent museum outside the United States on the site at the gateway to the park which will also feature 75,000m² of new homes.

Winning team in full:

  • Allies and Morrison (London)
  • O’Donnell & Tuomey (Dublin)
  • Josep Camps/Olga Felip Arquitecturia (Girona, Spain)
  • Gustafson Porter (London)
  • Buro Happold (London)
  • Gardiner and Theobald (London)

It is understood the headline-grabbing development is due to receive £141 million of government funding.

Among the teams to miss out was a joint bid by AECOM, Stanton Williams, Alison Brooks, Carmody Groarke and Asif Khan and collaboration between Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, 5th Studio, Coffey Architects, David Kohn and DRDH Architects (see full lists below).

Bob Allies of Allies and Morrison said: ‘Having been involved in the design of the Olympic Park from the submission of the initial bid to the completion of the Legacy masterplan, we’re very excited to have been selected for this final component of what will be an extraordinary new piece of London - a remarkable collaboration between outstanding institutions.’

Sheila O’Donnell and John Tuomey added: ‘Cultural and educational buildings and the public realm have been the critical purpose of our practice for more than 25 years. It feels like all our work has been leading towards this extraordinary commission.

It feels our work has been leading towards this extraordinary commission

‘And we’re happy to be back again in London where we began our careers in architecture. We greatly look forward to collaborating on the creation of an exciting urban quarter in this new part of town.

The two-stage contest, which has been organised by the London Legacy Development Corporation and competition specialists Malcolm Reading Consultants, was launched in September 2014 and attracted 43 submissions.

The jury was chaired by Paul Finch and included: Louisa Hutton of Sauerbruch Hutton; Martin Roth, director of the V&A Museum Martin Roth; Alistair Spalding, the chief executive and artistic director of Sadler’s Wells; and Martha Thorne, the executive director of the Pritzker Architecture Prize.

Site plan

Proposed site of the Olympicopolis

Previous story (AJ 12.12.14)

Revealed: top talents named on Olympicopolis shortlist

Six teams featuring a raft of exciting names including David Chipperfield, Asif Khan, O’Donnell and Tuomey and 6a Architects have been shortlisted for the new Olympicopolis cultural and education quarter

The finalists were chosen from 43 ‘high quality’ submissions for the huge project at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in Stratford, east London which will house outposts of the Victoria and Albert Museum, Sadler’s Wells and University of the Arts London.

The two-stage contest, which has been organised by the London Legacy Development Corporation and competition specialists Malcolm Reading Consultants, was launched in September 2014.

Some 1,000 architects, master planners, engineers and landscape designers from around the world registered their interest (see AJ 16.10.14). Among those to miss out was a joint bid by Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, Amanda Levete and David Adjaye and a collaboration between Atkins with Burwell Deakins, C.F. Møller, Farrell, Nord, Stitch and Wayne Hemingway.

The six teams in full:

  • AECOM with Stanton Williams, Alison Brooks Architects, AKT II, Asif Khan, Carmody Groarke, Charcoalblue, Haworth Tompkins and Vogt Landscape Architects
  • Ramboll UK with Rick Mather, RCR, Jun’ya Ishigami, So-il, Max Fordham, Eckersley O’Callaghan, Steer Davies Gleave, Gardiner and Theobald, Savills, Britain Thinks, Eley Kishimoto, Ab Rogers, Charcoalblue, Speirs + Major and Gross.max
  • Allies and Morrison with Buro Happold, O’Donnell and Tuomey, Gardiner and Theobald, Gustafson Porter and Josep Camps/Olga Felip Arquitecturia
  • David Chipperfield Architects with Arup, Robbrecht en Daem, Harry Gugger Studio, Vogt Landscape Architects, Publica Associates, Alinea consulting
  • Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios with Atelier Ten, Grant Associates, Expedition, Charcoalblue, Gardiner & Theobald, 5th Studio, Coffey Architects, David Kohn, DRDH Architects, Hoidn Wang Partner and Thomas Matthews
  • Baumschlager Eberle with 6a Architects, Office Kersten Geers David Van Severen, Latz+Partner, Buro Happold, Momentum Consulting Engineers, Charcoalblue, Gardiner & Theobald, Polly Staple and Chisenhale Gallery

The cultural and education quarter aims to showcase London’s cultural prowess and bring together organisations with exceptional programmes within the performing arts, fashion, visual arts, craft, science, technology and design.

The scheme is due to receive £141million of government funding and create approximately 3,000 jobs as well as contributing £2.8billion in economic activity to the local area.

The Victoria and Albert Museum, Sadler’s Wells and University of the Arts London are partners in the development. University College London is also collaborating on the wider Olympicopolis scheme and will be building a major new campus next to the Stratford Waterfront site.

The second stage of the competition will see the six shortlisted teams invited to submit concept designs for the culture and education quarter by Easter 2015. The winning team will be announced in late spring 2015 following deliberations by a jury chaired by Paul Finch, World Architecture Festival, and including representatives from each of the institutions to be housed in the scheme.

Mayor of London Boris Johnson said: ‘We’ve seen a fantastic response to our global search for top design talent to bring alive the Olympicopolis vision. This follows the recent confirmation of £141m from Government to support the development of this exciting project.”

Martin Roth, Director Victoria and Albert Museum, said: ‘What makes this shortlist so exciting is the diversity of design disciplines represented with established architects working in collaboration with new and emerging practitioners. We are confident that this short list of national and international designers and architects will ensure a wonderful new building for London.”

Alistair Spalding, Sadler’s Wells’ Chief Executive and Artistic Director, said: ‘I am impressed by the calibre of the short listed teams and look forward to seeing the concept designs for our new theatre and the whole Stratford Waterfront site.

‘I am particularly interested in how the design teams will approach the task of making each of the spaces fit for their specific purpose, while at the same time creating a campus that will bring the cultural and educational organisations together organically, reflect the quarter’s creative focus and be conducive to the collaboration that will happen.’


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