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City Square, Leeds, UK

Shortlisted, RIBA Competition, 2021

City Square was originally planned as a formal civic space; however, over time, this identity has been eroded and is currently an underperforming city asset.  Located adjacent to the railway station, for many, City Square is the gateway to Leeds providing a first impression of the city and helping to define its identity.

Our proposal is structured to create a clear and welcoming, yet dramatic, introduction to Leeds.  It becomes a place of orientation as well as a place of gathering, building on the history of the site to help reinforce the cultural and physical identity of the city.

Our proposals create a place of epic simplicity - civic ambition achieved with a minimum of means, looking to the future while learning from the past.  To achieve the desired spatial clarity our proposal is structured around a series of concentric layers. These layers help to frame the space visually, structure movement patterns and provide spaces for different scales of day-today and special activities. Collectively, these layers create a multi-dimensional space and contribute to its unique, urban atmosphere.

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