TGP successfully won a design competition to redesign Vanbrugh Piazza ironically named Vanbrugh Paradise by the student community. The space is central to York University’s Heslington West Campus and was largely disused, containing only one seat. The brief called for the space to provide a focal point, act as the ‘Heart of the Campus’, be accessible to all, provide a usable ‘wow’ space adaptable for all sorts of gathering including ceremonies, exhibitions, social events, arts and performance including outdoor screens.
TGP undertook considerable consultation with the University community to identify priorities and requirements. The design responds to the space and axis to show the views to the lake and to an outdoor cinema required by the benefactor, the outgoing Chancellor Greg Dyke. The principles of the design include accessible, adaptable spaces for everyone and integration of a ‘rain garden’ approach to sustainable drainage.