New publication: ATLAS plus associated event: New Maps for an Island Planet

Atlas front cover

New publication: ATLAS – Geography, Architecture and Change in an Interdependent World & New Maps for an Island Planet, Southbank Centre, Tuesday 13 March 2012, 6.30pm Doreen Massey, Carolyn Steel, Andrew Simms, Lemn Sissay, Quentin Cooper

A new publication, ATLAS: Geography, Architecture and Change in an Interdependent World brings together geographers and architects, writers, artists and designers, to test novel ways of understanding and responding to global environmental and economic change (Publisher: Black Dog, February 2012)

To celebrate the publication of ATLAS, an event, New Maps for an Island Planet, takes place at Southbank Centre as part of the Literature and Spoken Word programme – Tuesday 13 March, 6.30pm in the Purcell Room, Queen Elizabeth Hall.

Eminent geographer Doreen Massey (Prof. Emeritus, Open University Geography Dept.), architect Carolyn Steel (author of Hungry City) and campaigner and writer Andrew Simms (Fellow, nef, New Economics Foundation) will draw on their contributions to ATLAS, in a discussion chaired by broadcaster Quentin Cooper (BBC Material World). The poet and playwright Lemn Sissay, also a contributor to ATLAS, will give a reading of his poetry.

After the discussion and reading, the Open Book session will offer the chance to engage with a wider group of contributors to ATLAS in an informal gathering at cafe tables in the Queen Elizabeth Hall foyer.

ATLAS editors: Renata Tyszczuk,  School of Architecture University of Sheffield and Joe Smith, Nigel Clark and Melissa Butcher, Open University Geography

For more information about the event go to:

Tickets for the event £10  available from:

Paul Testa in Zumtobel Lighting photo competition

Zumtobel photo competition winnersAt the end of last year SSoA tutor Paul Testa entered the Zumtobel Lighting photo competition. It’s a really interesting format where they send you a disposable camera, you take some photos with it and send it them back without processing the film. It’s very liberating as you have no idea what the product is turning out like. In December Paul heard that one of his photos had been shortlisted in the top 22 and was featured in the 20th January issue of BD

Paul Testa's photo entry for Zumtobel competition

On the 17th February Paul went down to Notting Hill, London for the awards lunch. The prizes were presented by Sean Griffiths from FAT:Architecture and Jim Eyre from Wilkinson Eyre who were two of the judges along with Steve Shackleton (Zumtobel), Andy Cassie (CIB), Amanda Baillieu (BD) and Gareth Gardner (photographer).

Isover Multicomfort House Shortlist

Trent Lane Visual, SSoA

Two University of Sheffield School of Architecture graduate students have been shortlisted for the Isover Multi-comfort House Student Design Competition, a two stage international competition sponsored by French insulation company Saint-Gobain Isover. The Nottingham Trent river basin was chosen as this year’s competition site, with competitors looking at ways to “explore a new paradigm of sustainable post-industrial regeneration. The focus of the project is the development of a sustainable neighbourhood, providing accommodation for 12-15 families plus essential services to ensure an effective work-life balance.” First year PhD candidate Jordan Lloyd and Eric Chancellor, who is currently undertaking MSc Sustainable Architecture Studies teamed up with Nottingham based historian and design graduate Chris Matthews to design a scheme that employs a fundamentally different development mechanism for house building.

The Trent Bank proposal is a design-led framework that centres on self-provision as a sustainable development and procurement model for new neighbourhoods. It proposes that the first move should be to convert an existing riverside depot into a self-build factory/academy. The community factory then becomes the engine which equips a community of ordinary people to procure and build their own user-made neighbourhood, which can be more affordable, more sustainable and more suited to their needs than a market-led development.

This approach is influenced by the principles set out in A Right to Build, a joint research project between Sheffield School of Architecture and London-based practice Architecture 00:/. In collaboration with 00:/’s Alastair Parvin, also a former Sheffield student and author of A Right to Build, the team have developed a proposal which uses the WikiHouse system: an open source construction system developed by 00:/ and published under a Creative Commons license. The WikiHouse system allows non-professionals without formal training or skills to design, share and download 3D models for houses, the parts for which can be cut from standard 18mm plywood sheets using an automated CNC milling process. The houses can then be quickly and easily assembled with no need for formal training or power tools; not unlike an IKEA kit.

Trent Basin Night, SSoA

The development allows for a low density, but high intensity programme of start-up businesses and community amenities, with transient commercial use – taking advantage of a piece of planning legislation called a Local Development Order (LDO). The scheme also addresses numerous infrastructural issues in the surrounding area and would viably provide a better link between the basin site and the city centre, located less than a mile away, as well as considerably improving the water’s edge. The currently underused river inlet would be reconfigured into the UK’s largest mooring and associated facilities provided for river boats, with large tracts of the space being used to host city-wide events such as open air concerts, carnivals and large markets.

The ease of WikiHouse’s construction with an emphasis on low skill threshold makes it the perfect housing technology for self providers. Environmental simulations using Isover’s premium insulation exceeds the organisers’ technical requirements, whilst the product would provide lasting value for self-provided home owners. Those owners, liberated from the costs and risks of the traditional planning process, and motivated by their desire to reduce heating costs during the life of the building, would be able to specify better performance building fabric, as well as being able to adapt and improve their home in the future whenever they need to.

The national stage of the competition is being judged at the 2012 Ecobuild at ExCel London on March 21st at 3 pm, 2012 at stand N230.

Download the competition panels here See Competion Video here

Related links The Multicomfort Competition Site WikiHouse A Right to Build: The next mass housing-building industry Ecobuild Architecture 00:// The University of Sheffield School of Architecture

MAUD goes to Copenhagen on 8th-10th of March 2012

RE-Architecture Conference 5th March 2012



MSc Sustainable Architecture Studies (MSc SAS) are hosting the RE-Architecture (Renewable Energy – Architecture) Conference on Monday 5th March 2012, 10am-4pm at the University of Sheffield, School of Architecture, Arts Tower, Floor 16

The schedule for the day: 10.00 Arrivals, welcome and introductions 10.30 Dr. Abigail Hathway, Sheffield Renewables – Hydro projects at Jordan Dam & Kelham Island 11.00 Rob Eavis, Fusion G-Source – Hybrid systems for ground source heat pumps and PV panels 11.40 Aldous Everard, Sheffield Solar Farm 12.00 Tours of Sheffield Solar Farm and lunch 14.00 Introductions 14.10 Steve Morrell, E.ON – Biomass Energy plant at Blackburn Meadows, Sheffield 14.40 Steve Marshall, BDP – The architecture of E.ON’s Biomass Energy plant 15.00 Robin Ridley, South Yorkshire Forest Partnership – Small to medium biofuel 15.30 Plenary and closing remarks

All are welcome to attend

For further information please email Lucy Jones, Programme Director of MSc SAS at

President’s crit at the RIBA

President's crit at the RIBAPresident’s crit at the RIBA, 9th February. As chair of judges for Dissertation Peter Blundell Jones was on the panel with Kate Heron, RIBA President Angela Brady and this year’s Gold-medal winner Herman Hertzberger. Kibwe Kavares, right, presents his project ‘Robots of Brixton’.

Studio 3 Goes Neighbourly

studio3 goes neighbourlyThis year Studio 3 (MArch) are developing their projects around the theme of “Neighbourhoods”, on sites based within Stocksbridge, near Sheffield. As part of this, on Monday 23rd January, a participation event was held in Stocksbridge where students were able to engaged with local residents and visitors about what they felt about their neighbourhood. To prompt interest and discussion at the event, framed views of Stocksbridge were displayed alongside examples of work by local artists. Using these as prompts for conversation, participants were asked what they thought the heart of their neighbourhood, as well as what they thought about the different types of local artwork and to draw or write what they would like to see more of within their neighbourhood in the future. More information about this event can be found at and the work of the whole studio at

Professor Blundell-Jones on Lucien Kroll’s ecological school at Caudry

Professor Peter Blundell-Jones will give a talk on “Lucien Kroll’s ecological school at Caudry” from 4pm on Wednesday 15th February 2012 in the School of Architecture on Floor 13 of the Arts Tower. The talk coincides with the publication of an article on the same topic in this month’s Architectural Review. The talk is hosted by the MSc Sustainable Architecture Studies. Please see poster attached. Drinks and nibbles will be provided. All welcome!