Work/Live Unit for a fashion designer

Final Major Project 

The city of Sheffield in South Yorkshire has reinvented itself to become one of the cultural centres of the North. (Observer, Feb 2005). This is particularly accentuated in the City Council’s local development framework for Sheffield’s Devonshire Quarter, which aims to make the latter a centre of industry and culture. Research based on ACME reports shows that the Yorkshire region is, outside of London, the second most important creative hub in the UK. It therefore requires an upgraded infrastructure.

The proposed work/living units will take over one of the City Centre’s last surviving cutleries, the Taylor’s Eye Witness, whose company is on the verge of relocating to new premises. This Victorian Grade II* listed purpose-built cutlery works, dating from the 1850’s, lies on Milton Street in the already bespoke Devonshire quarter. It is within walking distance of numerous facilities including bus and train stations.

The building occupies an imposing rectangular block (95.8 m x 27.9m) with triple courtyard plan. Due to a lack of continuity and structural grid throughout the edifice, it could be divided into three parts: the south-west, the central- and the north-east wing. All components have great development potential, but the focus will remain on the south-west wing. The latter consists of a mid 20th Century open-plan grinding hall with glass-panelled roof. It is flanked to the North, South and West by a 3 storey and to the East by a 4-storey range of the original structure. This part of the building provides an ideal base for a creative redevelopment into work/living units for textile, fashion, graphic, illustration/ digital media, furniture, object, jewellery and light metal artists and designers.

The building’s prime location, together with the inherent architectural value of its heritage, constitutes the ideal grounds for the proposed project.

 

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