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AJ Student Prize 2018: University of Bath

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The two students selected for the AJ Student Prize by the University of Bath

About the Department of Architecture & Civil Engineering

  • Courses BSc (Hons) Architecture, Master of Architecture, PG Cert in Professional Practice 
  • Location Bath 
  • Head of School Alex Wright 
  • Full-time tutors 25 
  • Part-time tutors 180 
  • Number of students 500 
  • Staff to student ratio 1:9 
  • Fees £9,250 (undergraduate home/EU)


Stephen Smith, BSc (Hons) Architecture

Model photo

Model photo

Project title Lacuna: The Void in the Ocean

Project description It is no secret that we are depleting the Earth’s finite resources. As populations boom, and technology advances, our dependence on minerals is only growing in magnitude. Heads are now turning towards our oceans as we look to discover new deposits of resources. Lacuna seeks to become the epicentre of a new movement; an experiment on behalf of the world. Its primary objective is to map, probe and harvest the seabed, both literally and figuratively, sourcing answers, energy and mineral resource. The proposed test site exists on the western edge of the Shambles Sandbank in a unique ‘void’ that is completely absent of all ecological life. Lacuna will exist as a beacon of futurity on the horizon line, an isolated station defined entirely by the brutal environmental conditions that surround it. Primarily operated by the Lacuni, a group dedicated to fostering a greater appreciation of our oceans, it will remain open to marine scientists and members of the public, who will venture out from Portland Bill to conduct collaborative research within the void.

Plans hi res

Plans hi res

Tutor citation ‘Stephen’s project is an architectural proposition that counteracts a conventional response to a brief, explores a new building typology and offers an innovative approach to the question of what we need architecture to be. His ideas were rigorously pursued and beautifully illustrated, with the result being a truly exceptional project in its ambition and realisation.’ Cat Martin


Luke Gordon, MArch

Image 1   view of fish hanging to dry

Image 1 view of fish hanging to dry

Project title Havana Bay Fishery

Project description This fishery uses the theoretical transformation of Havana Bay into a freshwater resource that carries out extensive aquaculture. The dissolution of the Soviet Union, and by extension Comecon, has resulted in a drastically diminished Cuban fishing fleet and a reduced fish stock for the island’s population. Responding to the observed dissidence of Havanan fishermen’s illegal practices, the design thesis is a critique and response to food availability in Cuba. Situated on a derelict site previously housing one of many industrial shipping warehouses throughout Havana Bay, the pier provides a structural framework for a fish processing and preservation facility, aquaculture research, dining, market space, and landscaped recreational space for street food. An experimental hurricane-proof bamboo canopy stitches together these blocks, shading the site’s activities while providing a racking system for fish to be dried and sold throughout the day. 

Image 7   model 1250

Image 7 model 1250

Tutor citation ‘Luke continuously honed his proposals culminating in a refined and elegant plan influenced by people, place and use. His project represents an exemplar of mature, sophisticated and innovative architectural design, rooted in its place with a consistent intellectual thread from conception to completion.’ Jayne Barlow  

Student subscription offer 

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