Wednesday, 29 August 2012

PLACE Urban Design Summer School Day Five | Workshop Results & Prizes

The PLACE Urban Design Summer School is a week long event for 14 - 20 years olds to explore architecture, design, public art, sketching, photography, urban history and more! The week offers the 27 young people registered a chance to learn about the built environment through exciting workshops, fascinating tours and more!

The Summer School is a part of 'out of PLACE' in Ireland's tallest building, The Obel. With support from Karl Group and McConnell Property PLACE are occupying the ground floor with fantastic views over-looking the River Lagan until September. Out of PLACE will also host the 'Secret Laboratories' exhibition and the 'RSUA President's Medal: The Shortlist' exhibition.

Let's see what everyone got up to on day five with a visit to the Lagan Weir, the Workshop Results and Prize Giving...

Bill Morrison, PLACE Chairman got things started on the final morning by presenting the results of the Summer School's Planning and Design Workshop from earlier in the week. On Tuesday of the Summer School week the participants brainstormed ideas and applied key urban design principles to create a vision for the City Quays area near the Harbour Commissioners Office. Armed with the participants ideas and sketches Bill and Chris prepared a photoshopped vision for the area and highlighted the suggestions made by the participants. 

The City Quays site which the summer school participants sought
to masterplan. Photo by Gary Potter (July 2011).

Next up and the last site visit of the summer school to Belfast's Lagan Weir. The huge infrastructure project was completed in 1994 at a cost of £14m and has provided Belfast with an artificially constant level on the River Lagan since. Such has been the significance of the Weir in providing an attractive riverfront for regeneration that some have claimed it was the most successful and important element within the Laganside area.

The River Manager explains the function of the Lagan Weir.
Photo by Gary Potter.

Going under the Lagan! Photo by Gary Potter.

Looking across the Lagan from beneath! Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Whilst learning about the history of the Weir and the vital functions it provides the summer school also heard about the future potential of the area. The Queen's Quay Draft Masterplan available at this link suggests a number of proposals for regenerating around the Weir and even suggests a permanent zip line from Queen's Quay to Donegall Quay!

How Queen's Quay could look with a zip line tower across the Lagan.
Image from

As the summer school drew to a close everyone gathered in the Black Box at Hill Street to share pizza and watch the fantastic "Social Life of Small Urban Spaces" documentary movie.

Pizza at the Black Box. Photo by Catherine McCormick.

After lunch and the final guest of the week, John Kerrigan from Leica Geosystems provided everyone with the chance to peer through the rather expensive Laser Scanner equipment.

John Kerrigan explains how surveying equipment works.
Photo by Catherine McCormick.

To round off the day Aidan McGrath, PLACE Director had selected two images from each participants summer school camera that he felt deserved to be exhibited. Aidan provided positive comments and took the time to articulate each image.

Aidan McGrath provides some positive comments for the participants
and highlights the qualities in each photo. Photo by Gary Potter.

Summer School Photo Exhibition. Photo by Gary Potter.

The PLACE Urban Design Summer School 2012 was a huge success with positive feedback from everyone involved, from participants, guest speakers, staff and parents and we look forward to next year. In the meantime here are some snaps from the final afternoon with our 2012 Summer School Participants!

The PLACE Urban Design Summer School 2012 Team.
Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

Photo by Catherine McCormick.

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