The University of Wolverhampton's School of Architecture and Built Environment has been shortlisted for another award by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA).
The new RIBA Reinvention Award is designed to encourage architects to refurbishing existing buildings, rather than demolishing them to create new-builds.
The brand new accolade recognises achievement in the creative reuse of existing buildings through transformative projects that improve environmental, social, or economic sustainability.
The School of Architecture and the Built Environment based at the University of Wolverhampton's £120M Springfield Campus - a brownfield regeneration site - has been shortlisted along with three other projects for the award, a shortlist that includes 2 Midlands projects.
The project was the recipient of 3 RIBA West Midlands Awards in 2023, including Project Architect of the Year and Client of the Year, in addition to an RIBA Regional Award. It has also received the Conservation & Rejuvenation award at the Constructing Excellence Awards and the Pagabo framework provider named the project as its ‘best project above £15m’.
Championed by RIBA President Simon Allford, the Reinvention Award shines a light on the importance of retrofitting and its contribution towards achieving net zero. The four shortlisted buildings are all commended as exceptional examples of creative reuse, but the judges also note that each project demonstrates how innovative architecture can help to address wider societal issues.
The inaugural winner of the Reinvention Award 2023 will be announced at the RIBA Stirling Prize ceremony for the UK’s best new building on Thursday 19 October 2023 at Victoria Warehouse in Manchester.
The new School of Architecture and Built Environment offers specialist teaching and social learning spaces, design studios, specialist labs, multi-disciplinary workshops, a lecture theatre, cafe, offices, meeting rooms, and advanced VR facilities in the construction holodeck with the top floor dedicated to architectural courses.
The Architectural Studios are equipped with high-end workstations that allow for all students to be located together allowing for peer-to-peer learning and naturally occurring vertical learning, which is important to prepare for practice. The proximity of the ADT studios is especially important as it also allows for the natural cross-over of teaching and learning between these closely aligned courses.
Each student has a dedicated individual workspace where they can hone their critical thinking skills both as individuals and as a larger community, providing a solid foundation in the creative process. The dedicated architecture studios are supplemented by a material workshop, smart modelling and assembly workshop for physical model making and the Construction Holodeck to support state of the art digital workflows.
The School offers a variety of courses that support skills in architecture, construction, civil engineering, building control, building services, facilities management, quantity surveying, planning, construction management, housing and commercial.
Home to the Thomas Telford University Technical College (UTC), the University’s School of Architecture and Built Environment, and the Elite Centre for Manufacturing Skills, the regeneration of the former Springfield Brewery is central to the University’s vision of enhancing the student experience and supporting business growth. It is also home to the University’s new National Brownfield Research Institute for which the University recently secured £14.9 million funding from the BCLEP through the government’s Get Building Fund.