This infrastructure re-development project scoping was commissioned by the National UK Highways Agency.
The design team consisted of Benedict Anderson (design leader), Alexandra Glazko and Yektakarina Bobrova.
Client: Benyam Kenbata (Highways Agency); Project manager: Rudolf Muller; Lighting consultant: Filipe Pereira_Lopes of Mouchel Limited.
Starting off with what I saw as a flaw in the town’s centre’s proposed multi-million redevelopment scheme – its lack of address of a series of problematic pedestrian underpasses – an opportunity arose to propose their redevelopment to the UK Highways Agency in charge of maintaining and constructing UK’s highways infrastructure.
The subways inherent problematic included: navigational and signage issues, blind spots, public safety, night-time lighting and degradation. Commissioned to develop a schema to respond to the above issues from a brief set out by the Agency which later expanded to include three more subways and walking route, the design team generated a series of concepts around the subways form, the diversity of the town’s businesses and large university.
The designs for the redevelopment were inspired by a scheme that embraced the subway’s subterranean and circular form and allied them to the passages of time and space, universal constellation, history and technology. As design metaphor, the concepts developed were conceived to create ‘worlds’ within the subway that allowed the creation of practical design solutions. The designs seek to re-address the subway spaces by creating new public spaces for the community of Hatfield. The design concepts forward an urban design that can be understood as following the progressive urban developments created in the development of the ‘New Towns’ and later ‘Garden Cities’ schemes post 1945.