We are delighted to report that Alfie Hatch (OE2017), first year Architecture student at the University of East London, has been awarded a RIBA Award for the best year 1 student. RIBA (Royal Institute of British Architects) Awards are regarded internationally as a mark of excellence, recognising the best architecture, architects, research and students.
Alfie’s first university project was based around vernacular buildings in the Weald and Downland Living Museum. The second brief, located in the De Beauvoir Estate in Hackney, was ‘to design a building for a community of makers that share parts of their work space with each other and parts of their building with the local community’. Alfie’s building consisted of separate areas – a casting and sculpture studio, which utilised an abandoned underground carpark and shared community space which could be hired out for talks and private views. Alfie was keen to leave the existing surroundings (the top level of the carpark) untouched and not to interfere with the walking routes of residents who live in the tower blocks on either side. In order to achieve this, Alfie designed the communal area of his building to be cantilevered so that it would hover over the platform on top of the car park meaning that the bottom areas of the building (the stair cases) would have to act as an anchor for the top of the building. This lead to the stairs being made of concrete and the top to be a timber structure that would cling on to the concrete.
The judges were clearly impressed with Alfie’s designs and awarded him a RIBA Award for best year 1 student. We look forward to seeing more of Alfie’s work in the future.