The University of Reading School of Architecture will be housed in a retrofitted 1970s concrete brutalist building originally designed by Howell, Killick, Partridge & Amis. The retrofit will seek to create a functional space for the occupants, as well as serve as a hub for visitors and public events. The School of Architecture will sit alongside the School of Construction Management and Engineering to realise interdisciplinary synergies. The extended building will also host the departments of Art and Typography & Graphic Communication from within the School of Arts and Communication Design.
The brief which is being developed will ensure that the spaces created match the ambition and excellence of the four occupying academic departments. It will also seek to improve on energy efficiency and sustainability.
Adam Cossey, associate at Hawkins/Brown and former University of Reading student said: “This is an exciting project and an opportunity to improve the thermal energy efficiency of the building envelope, whilst remaining sympathetic to its original design.
“The other design challenge is to create a building that works for each of the four different academic disciplines to be housed there. Each department must have its own unique identity, but equally the brief was to create a ‘hub’ for these creative disciplines to come together, allowing students to get a cross-disciplinary experience.”
The University is welcoming the first cohort of architecture students in September 2016. They will initially be based at the historic London Road campus.
The University is offering a £3,000 a year scholarship to the first cohort of architecture students starting in September 2016.