The bus station square, together with the new Youth Zone Plus facility and the refurbished Grade II listed building will become a vibrant place alive with activity, reflecting the desire of creating a new transport hub that connects with the city and creates opportunities for development and for high quality design solutions.
The 4 level Youth Zone Plus exists as a functional spectacle, with light key to the architecture. An inverted stacking order to the facades materiality gives a lantern silhouette to the mid and top levels, which is juxtaposed by a solid, tectonic ground floor. As well as providing privacy, the base gives a clear interface with the listed building's 'glazed skirting' whilst also anchoring and robustly placing the delicate, translucent main body of the youth centre. At night time the backlit channel glass becomes an 'urban beacon', sending a clear and loud message to the young people of Preston.
The bus station concourses are reconfigured to address the existing and proposed build elements; the sense of arrival is heightened with a new direct access via various points in the new square that allows pedestrians to view the building from a more diverse periphery.
Organised around a matrix that replicates the alternating horizontal stripes of the bus station, the grid of this new public realm is populated with landscaping elements that configure the different zones of the square. Pergolas, recessed floor light fixtures along the main pedestrian traffic flows and the paving layout create several unique areas within the square that can be explored and enjoyed.
The competition is being administered by RIBA Competitions, to whom any enquiries relating to the general conditions of this competition should be addressed.