Mulberry Park's new Community Hub is now open and includes a 210 place primary school, 70 place children’s nursery and state-of-the art community facilities. Commissioned by Bath based housing association and house-builder, Curo, it supports a contemporary new development of 700 high quality homes and open spaces.
The unique co-location of facilities was a key consideration of the brief, providing maximum flexibility over time and the ability to create a vibrant and inclusive place to cater for the diverse needs of residents.
The cantilevered forms of the building have been inspired by the Mulberry Harbours which were temporary floating harbours used for the Allied invasion of Normandy during the Second World War, and designed by the Admiralty who were located at the site when it was used as an MoD base.
The striking copper alloy cladding is perforated with patterns derived from historic aerial photographs of the harbours, and is used to highlight the two beacon elements of the scheme, the main school hall along the Avenue and the third floor enterprise space cantilevered above the main entrance and public square.
A cream coloured brick, rich in variation, colour and texture has been used for the rest of the elevations to soften the bold forms and complement the buff bricks and Bath stone used in the rest of the development.
The community uses extend into the external environment with a new public square providing space for community events, markets and gatherings and a safe place for children to run around in before and after school.
Nick Fairham architect principal said: “It’s been really exciting and rewarding to work on Mulberry Park’s Community Hub. Developing Curo’s vision together with the community has led to the creation of a landmark building, which draws on the history of the site and the historic Floating Harbours.
We are hugely grateful to the local community for their input into our designs which are focused on bringing people together and delivering flexible, state-of-the-art facilities, including a nursery, school and community spaces, that can be adapted as their needs change. The Hub is set to be a trailblazer for future community buildings; it’s fantastic to see it come to life for people living at Mulberry Park today and for generations to come.”
BDP was architect, landscape architect and interior designer for the £9.1m scheme.