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tv   Britains Best New Building...  BBC News  October 18, 2021 1:30am-2:01am BST

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there is a phrase that has become rather familiar or so over last year or so — build back better. it is a phrase that says, if you're going to build something to fix today's problems, be really careful you are not going to create
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tomorrow's disaster, and that is why we have come to this place, british mosque in cambridge, one of six buildings nominated for this year's stirling prize. this is a little moment to sit back and admire beauty, a chance to look round the six nominated buildings for this year's riba stirling prize. at the end, we'll find out who has won the prize for britain's best new building. this is about more thanjust building — it is about solutions to problems, such as how can we continue to build without destroying the environment? how can we future—proof construction? and the most fundamental question of all, why build in the first place? a question that takes us to our
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first nominated building. kingston university in london wanted a new library and a place for its dance studios, but the town house is more than that. it's a way of creating openness, collaboration, togetherness and pride. wow. like, this is incredible. like, coming here and being, like, when i walk past with people that i've worked from home, i'mjust like, "yeah, i go to uni there." they're like, "that's where you study?" and i'm like, "yeah!" it's so cool. the first day i walked in here was actually very unique. i did not imagine this would be a university at all. it's polished, new, didn't give me the vibe of a traditional university that you see on tv shows. here is mostly dedicated
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to dance and performing arts — amazing to hear about because they are normally seeing as an afterthought for universities. dance and performing arts isn't usually seen as a career path. kingston, like many new universities grew out of a hodgepodge of buildings in different locations, few of them with much wow factor. the town house is meant to be a statement, a public face. it has given the university, for the first time, a front door. it is open to the public. these staircases are social spaces leading up to the whispering gallery. the library has been mixed in with the dance studios across there. everything servicing one central overriding thought — bringing people together. there is, like, a little bar and cafe there... it is such an open and bright space.
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there are so many more studios, meaning the whole curriculum has changed, our timetable, we can have so many more classes going on at the same time. it's lots of space, really uplifting when you come in, lots of natural light and everyone has a smile on their face when they come in the buildings. it is very exciting. and, after a year of learning by zoom, it has made everyone cherish a key part of the university experience. so, the last year or so, dance using zoom. did it work? well, we proved that it is possible! it was an experience. but being back here i'm guessing is a bit better.
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100%. i think everyone can attest that dance is meant to be, it is a social... dance, you know, it is a social art form and i think it is meant to be in the space life, bumping into people, connecting with people, having conversations like this. our next building, like the mosque, is all about fitting into the local environment — which is not the residential neighbourhood but somewhere which is really, really beautiful and the key issue is, don't spoil the view. the residential neighbourhood but somewhere which is really, really beautiful and the key
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issue is, don't spoil the view. the brief for this building was to create a world—class building in which to house the internationally significant boat collection. it is needed to be a building which can accommodate large—scale boats that was exciting for the public to want to visit but also, importantly, because it sat within one of our great national parks, it had to enhance the landscape that was within. sustainability has been really central to the concept of the building. we have systems such as the lake—source heat pump which heats the whole building underpinning the energy strategy.
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we have sourced local material so that the travel from source to site as is short as possible. the building actually has a zero waste strategy so all of the domestic waste water is treated on site and filtered through the landscape and reed bed so that it can then be discharged back into the lake as clean water. the site is amazing, reflects nature, reflects conservation. some of the success of what the team has achieved here is a building that is simultaneously foreground and background. foreground's the visitor experience — it's a building, it's here. and yet it's the background, it's the backdrop to a beautiful landscape setting. and immersing yourself in a fantastic collection. so, windermere, all about water, and our next building
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is equally elemental, a study in stone with all the attendant stresses, strains and personal trauma. was there a moment when you thought you'd wished you'd never started this? he laughs. of course, yeah. somebody's decided to press a button, it could all be - demolished. we are looking at an apartment building of eight flats and office space underneath the three offices and it is made of limestone, load—bearing limestone. limestone, correct. limestone. that's what this building is all about. rediscovering a way of building that doesn't involve
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the energy—hungry furnaces and kilns needed for steel, concrete and bricks. what's keeping this up, giant blocks of rock. the only energy required is cutting and moving them into place. it is a means of construction that has rather fallen out of fashion. this is sedimentary rock and depending on how old it is you will still find fossils within it and here you can see. . . this has come straight out of the ground, hasn't it? precisely, and this i is an ammonite shell. what we have found it you can still do it. - it is actually cheaper, faster, far greener still tojust - simply put stone buildings upl so we found that we save 90% of the embodied carbon had this been a steel cage -
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or steel—framed - building clad in stone. so very simplyjust cut the stone out of the body, transport and erect on site - and that is it. so, essentially, you have created a very high—tech building that has the appearance of a ruin. i guess so, yes. inside is equally natural. and this is your flat we're coming into? yes, straight in. that is some view. st paul's out there and we can see the stone. that is correct. that is our limestone exoskeleton. - so the outside is all stone, inside, all european oak, l timber. is that to make it carbon neutral, carbon—negative? so if you remove all- the aluminium partitions, plasterboard lining, - replace it all with timber frame and timber itself- as the finish and then any wet areas, more stone.
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normal, minimalist, architect's kitchen here, isn't it? yes, that is right, we can even hide the oven if we don't - want to look at it. nice big larders, hiding - the mess which is also a bit of a secret door short cut to our bedroom. i oh, it is a door. it is a doorway. come and follow me. wow. takes us past our bathroom. is this a bath? it is a nice big bath. the building is meant to evoke memories of old stone—built memory that once stood here, but it does stand out a bit when compared with its brick—built neighbours. one member of the local preservation society described
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it as an alien blob. and the council wanted it demolished. the long legal battle to keep the wrecking ball away has been won — but it has left its scars. was there a moment when you thought you should have never started this? of course, yeah. sorry, you wish me to elaborate, obviously. | obviously it would have been easier to do nothing and notl attempt to investigate, experiment, innovate, | as it were. this could have been a pile of rubble. i am told by councillors, . other councillors and other legal team involved it wouldn't have done but as far as i can. tell if we hadn't fought the appeal, why not. l the demolition order would have had to be enacted by somebodyl
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even if it wasn't by us. and your feelings now? it is difficult because if you. spend two—and—a—half years fighting even after he won. and were obviously relieved but that two—and—half—years of stress structures you, - in a way, doesn't it, so it is difficult. - our next building is all about a topic which has been very much at the heart of life over the last 12 months or so — key workers. millions of us went out and did our applause on the doorsteps. but that doesn't put a roof over people's heads, does it? we created a place that has a real sense of community and where the residents can feel they belong to. i am kaori ohsugi, a director
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at stanton williams. we were the architects of this key worker housing. it is ten buildings with 264 apartments. we focused on creating spaces between the buildings, a network of interconnecting courtyards in various character and styles, responding to the social function, starting from the public urban space of market square through to the much more community—focused landscape courts. are the buildings arranged to frame these spaces? the positioning and the undercuts that we introduced are intended to create moments of intimacy and a sense of discovery. this project is key working housing for the university of cambridge�*s staff and researchers. this project is key worker housing for the university of cambridge�*s staff and researchers.
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addington is a mixed—use development with accommodation, housing, retail, community centre, school, hotel. the university set out to establish and develop an extension to the city of cambridge which gives an opportunity for all staff and students to live and come andjoin and be part of the success story of the university of cambridge. of the development is one of the largest storm water recycling schemes within the world. all the water on the roof is stored and collected and then carried through into the attenuation point within the communal landscape court. to achieve the high demands for daylight meant that the buildings become quite far apart and the building form quite simple. one of the challenges was really for us to create a kind of intimacy and sense of place. addington overall is a fabulous. concept and i am always bowled over by the fact the university
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has undertaken this project. i the units are well—spaced, well—thought—out, love - the design, love the feel of it, it is actually quite i a bit of a luxury to i come here every day. when i visited a few months ago during the summer, i saw that people were actually inhabiting the spaces, there was a picnic happening in the landscape court, children's toys on the ground — there must have been a sense of community and people inhabiting the spaces. it was a main focus for this project but also what gives this project the meaning. all of these buildings have a degree of drama about them, but one in particular is all about heritage, history, and myth, and the issue is, how do you build something not spoil the magic?
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when we proposed it to english heritage, i never thought they'd accept. but sometimes, the crazy ideas are actually the best ideas. my name is william matthews and, along my with two partners, we were the engineers and the designers of the tintagel castle footbridge. the footbridge reconnects the two sides of the medieval castle built in the 12th century by richard, earl of cornwall. the mainland ward and the island ward were connected by rock which in a sense, it eroded away and the bridge recreates that lake between the two sides. one of the key drivers behind the project and its whole reason to exist was to improve accessibility to the site. one of the major problems at tintagel is this
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incredibly rocky landscape. we wanted to be able to get lots of people here who couldn't get here before because there were so many steps up to the island, a lot of people couldn't because they had bad knees, use wheelchairs — whatever it was. now we have essentially step—free access all the way from the car park onto the site, and it was so satisfying on the opening day to see literally a queue of wheelchair users from the local village queue up to be the first person to cross the bridge and onto the island — something that they may not have done for many, many years. in my mind, this was a textbook example of how you should design a major piece of engineering in a really sensitive heritage or archaeological site. you could look at all sorts of designs for bridges that would actually have to go through the archaeology on the surface of the island. the elegance of this solution is that it is anchored into the rock on either side below the archaeology, so very, very clever. the materials that were used were not just structural but also tied into the
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landscape and situation. for the bridge deck, we used slate mined from a quarryjust two miles away. 40,000 hand=split and hand—cut slate slabs laid and arranged like after eight mints. one word that encapsulates it is not an architectural word, but it is �*fun�*, and you can see it on the face of users — the fun and the enjoyment they are getting from the project, and that is extremely gratifying. and now, ourfinal building, a mosque in cambridge. when i first walked in, i think, when you first enter up the stairs through the car park and you see these sweeping pillars — yeah, it's breathtaking, to be honest. the puzzle here was to try to create something which created a sense of awe, spirituality,
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but didn't dominate this cambridge street. so, set behind the greenery, the building slowly reveals itself as you walk towards it. the inspiration, a wooded grove. the garden of paradise. so, everything around us is wood, then? yes. a low carbon building, i guess? yes, one of the central tenets of the design was doing tonic design something that was both environmentally and socially sustainable so the involvement of the community was important too that this building should sit comfortably in its community. so this was a competition in 2009 and members of the community — non—muslim members of the community were invited to be part of the process of choosing the architect so involved from very, very early stages.
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but this isn'tjust about sustainability. it is also a place designed to be welcoming to women. one of the things you see working here is that predominantly people who come throughout the day, other than to pray, are women and children. a poll was put out to ask women how much would you like there to be a separation, if any at all? so that is why you see barriers at different heights — one covering from head to toe, one at waist level and even one with no barriers. also, in that sense, it is very unique. even when women come now, they often come to the office and they ask — they look uncomfortable, like unsettled, like, "where is the women's section?" because they are used to going round the back or going up some stairs. but just the fact that women can come through the main entrance along with the men and go to their section of the prayer hall, have their own, sort of,
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dedicated ablution facilities that are accommodated with disabled toilets and baby—changing facilities — everything thought out for both men and women — that is so liberating, as you said, to come into a space that is open and accessible. the beauty of cambridge mosque, there for you. now, we have seen six buildings. there is one question left — who has won? we need to go to an awards ceremony. and so, to coventry cathedral, the uk's city of culture and the chair of this year's jury, one of the giants of global architecture, norman foster. we wanted everyone to be able to win but finally after hours of agonising discussion, as a team, we concluded that the winner was about the future. it was about younger
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generations, first—generation students and, of course, that leads us to the town house by grafton architects. cheering and applause. music sting plays. kingston town house — a building with a purpose to make university life open, accessible, collaborative, social. receiving the award for grafton architects, gerard carty. and we have the winner with us now. gerard carty from grafton architects, congratulations. must be a good feeling. it is absolutely astonishing. we are really astounded, we're delighted that we have won this prize, but particularly for the university because this is something that's so important that we speak about what university education is about. and... one of the extraordinary things about this is the client, as much as anything, isn't it? because they had this strange
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vision about inviting in the public, getting the library and the dance studios together, trying to create a sort of social hub. exactly. they were looking for a showcase building and what that meant was not that it was a show—off building but a building that revealed what was happening inside the building to the passers—by into the outside. do you think that this is about changing the way university education might be? because, i mean, a lot of the students are not from university backgrounds. their parents didn't go to university, they're often first—generation. you know, it is quite inviting, isn't it? it is inviting, absolutely. everybody has to feel at home, no matter what. i suppose what struck us about the university, as it is so culturally diverse and we had to think about integrating so many people in many different ways so that they feel comfortable. so if it is about gender or race or culture or religion, they'll feel like they should belong, so it is like little world, really.
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it is like a complete little world so you find people who are like you who maybe speak to you in this building. gerard carty, thanks for speaking to us. congratulations. the winner of this year's riba stirling prize is kingston town gouse by grafton architects, and they said one measure of how successful the building was would be looking at how many chance encounters there were, how many conversations, how many smiles, how much laughter in the building and a building which is a celebration of togetherness. it feels a fitting winner of this year's riba stirling prize building of the year. thank you. hello. i fancy you'll be delving into different sections of your autumn wardrobe through the week ahead.
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certainly some waterproofs required during the first half — we're going to see spells of wet and windy weather, punctuated by some sunnier moments, but temperatures will be a big contrast as well. to start the week, with low pressure across the atlantic, we're actually going to drag our air up from the tropics — some unusually mild air coming ourway. but as that low pressure pushes its way eastwards, we may see the return of sunshine more widely, but there will be a brief shot ofarctic air coming in from the north. that's a long way off to begin with, though, and it's the mild air taking hold through monday, beginning pretty mild notes for many for many in the morning rush hour. coolest with single—figure temperatures across the midlands, east anglia, south—east. best of the sunshine here lasting longest through the day as well. rain through the morning rush hour in northern ireland, spreading in across wales, western england and scotland during the morning and into the afternoon. and a bit further eastwards, it's not arriving to the channel islands, east anglia, south—east until later in the afternoon, and for some maybe not even into the evening. brighter conditions to end the day in some western parts but still fairly cloudy. temperatures, though, above where we'd normally expect this stage in mid october. heavy rain to end the day, then. east anglia and south—east, that gradually clears away.
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some dry conditions for a time overnight. best of the clear weather to the north and east but more wet and increasingly windy weather starting to push in from the south—west. probably one of the mildest nights of the week, then, monday night into tuesday, with temperatures higher in the morning then we'd normally expect during the afternoon! and that's because we have still got that area of low pressure just to the west of us, dragging in southerly winds. the warmest of the airjust ahead of these weather fronts which are going to spread rain more extensively across the country on tuesday. some heavy bursts, fairly erratic, that movement, northwards and eastwards, some seeing higher rainfall totals than others. brightening up across ireland later on, adding some afternoon sunshine potentially in east anglia and the south—east — even if it's on the hazy side. we could see temperatures get up to around 21 degrees. this stage in october, your average temperatures are around 10—14 degrees across the country. and we could be probably around those values through night and into thursday morning. low pressure still around across the country through wednesday night, and we're going to see more in the area of low pressure systems spreading their way northwards and eastwards. this one will bring heavy rain at times through the central swathe of the country, brightening up on the southern
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flank of it before more wet and windy weather arrives. not a bad day through the northern half of scotland, and sunshine and showers later in northern ireland. but whilst we'll see temperatures 17 or 18 in the south and east, it's turning cold across the north. that cooling trend continues into thursday.
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welcome to bbc news — i'm david eades. our top stories: seventeen american missionaries and family members have been reported kidnapped by a gang in haiti. the family of the british mp david amess, who was stabbed to death on friday, has made a plea for tolerance, regardless of people's religious or political beliefs. landslides and flooding in the indian state of kerala have left more than 25 people dead and dozens more missing. we have a special report from the afghan ministry for vice and virtue — what does the future hold women and girls under taliban rule? the earth shot to build a waste free world goes to the city of
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