B I R M I N G H A M   C E N T E N A R Y   S Q U A R E

Urban Design Competition 2014

Our proposal aims to realize the potential of Centenary Square to be a civic meeting place for the city. What is sought is a kind of enigmatic emptiness, a space that is waiting for something to happen. In order to achieve this a new urban floor unifies the disparate elements of square, roadway, tram-stop and entrance ways. This new floor is overlaid with a grid of trees, establishing the square as a garden. Clearings are then made in this grid of trees, setting up urban rooms that can accommodate diverse uses. The main clearing relates to the new library and to its public balcony and becomes a natural urban stage. Other connected clearings contain the transport stop, the Hall of Memory and a play area. The hard surface is interrupted and softened with compacted gravel and grass and avoids level changes in order to make an open and accessible public realm. 

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