White Arkitekter AB has been selected from 59 strong entries for the RIBA-run Salford House for Life competition
Scandinavian practice White Arkitekter AB has won the Salford House for Life competition, organised by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA). White’s proposal was chosen as the winning scheme from fifty nine entries. The original competition brief invited proposals for the design of a development of 120 family homes on the 1.5 hectare site in Greengate close to the centre of Manchester. The brief highlighted the provision for sustainable healthy living, requesting that urban design proposals respond to the findings of the Marmot report.
White’s winning proposal is landscape-led and focuses on the creation of social and green spatial solutions for family living. The concept of community place-making is at the heart of the scheme. The proposal provides a framework for residents of the Greengate community to take pride and ownership of the shared amenities made available to them. There are no private defendable spaces outside the building line and residents are encouraged to plant, harvest and occupy the shared green spaces as they would their own garden.
The proposal combines three house types and three apartment types to accommodate a diverse community of all ages. All accommodation benefits from private garden/recreation or play space as well as extensive shared amenity space. Accommodation is arranged in blocks varying in height from 2.5 - 5 storeys blocks. The buildings will be brick with glazed balconies/terraces.
The perimeter arrangement of each block creates a walled garden at the centre, which is accessible to all Greengate community residents. These gardens are conceived as three very different architypes which refer to familiar landscapes – urban, agricultural and rural - and each have a different character promoting active and passive approaches to healthy living.
1. The Pitch combines parking facilities with an area to play ball sports and raised planting beds for vegetable growing.
2. The Copse combines woodland planting as a habitat for birds and insects with a runningtrack to promote fitness.
3. The Orchard combines blossoming fruit trees for communal harvesting and greenhouses for cultivating flowers and seasonal plants and a grass court for tennis and picnics.
The main 'street' or boulevard, which bisects the development, is treated as a key public space. It is tree-lined and terminates with a simple square and copse of trees. There are no residential units at street level along the boulevard – these spaces are reserved for commercial use and social spaces.