| Author: Stanley Tan
| Tutors: Nicholas Lobo Brennan, Douglas Murphy, Astrid Smitham.
| Royal College of Art
The proposal intends to be a concentrated city intensifying the uses of the traditional city whilst becoming an alternative infrastructure to the ground conditions created by many contemporary developments. It proposes an alternative way of living in the city via introducing a new sheltered street market ground condition and establishing an elevated activated horizontal datum of pleasure, culture, creative work and living which closely relates to the London urban fabric.
With globalization and commoditized architecture, the city has adopted a generic international financial monoculture which removes/replaces authentic city life and no longer acts as an accurate social barometer of the city – it works against the grain of everyday life and the logic of an all-encompassing city.The city as an idea means multiplicities, diversity in food, music and arts, culture and local economies. In particular, the lively street market food cultures which celebrate the diversity of the city’s peoples and provide chance encounters and meetings.
New developments do not need to only mean extracting maximum financial opportunity from a site (i.e. towers of generic individualism with hyper-controlled ground conditions). The juxtaposition of its form and shapes are abstracted dimensions extracted from London’s streetscapes and historical monuments within the city, giving rise to a new identifiable figure which aspires to become a self-referring silhouette.
These set of forms and new datum is derived from different historical datums applied throughout the city of London through monuments like Church spires, industrial chimneys and Georgian terraces.
The proposal is a hypothesis on the idea of a city of the future whereby working and living is in the same place and as a result, there will be a greater need for informal personal contact. The living and working functions are complemented with a wide range of spaces for leisure, culture, sport and education, all stacked one upon the other, connecting different spheres of life.
For this reason, the project is conceived of as a large building that contains the energy of a city and stands as a solitary element: a social condenser on the edge of Edgware Road; a new market for North London.