LAUREN RETURNS FOLLOWING COMPLETION OF PART 2
After a very gruelling two years back at university I have to say it is great to be back with the rest of the JAM team in the new office! They have done a fantastic job providing us with an inspiring and unique office space which is proving to be an invaluable space to work in.
Since finishing my Part 1 Placement with the team I have now returned as a Part 2 Architectural Assistant having newly completed my Part 2 qualification. I was ecstatic when my results were posted online in June and I had the very exciting news to share with everyone that I passed my Master’s of Architecture course with Distinction. The last two years have been very busy and involved a lot of hard work and late nights so it is fantastic to be able to say that it has all been worth it to achieve this outcome! The graduation ceremony took place last Friday and I even managed to make a quick pit stop at the office for a group photo!
As part of my MAsters course I focussed most of my research on various aspects of housing provision in Scotland. While my dissertation explored the impact of new single housing in the Scottish rural landscape, my studio research focussed heavily on the implementation of higher density housing through various housing typologies, utilising the notion of sense of place and community as a catalyst for bringing people back to more central areas and to combat the current trend of periphery low density housing developments. My main project focussed on the detailed design of a new housing development in an exposed location by the sea and harbour in Peterhead. The project took its inspiration from fishing villages such as Aberdeen’s Footdee (or ‘Fittie’ as it is more commonly known by locals) and other contemporary housing schemes in the UK to create a series of sheltered and intimate spaces which encourages social interaction and aspires to generate a strong sense of community.
My second project looked into implementing a more radical approach of high density design as part of my thesis. Focusing on the empty and run down back land areas in the town centre, the outline proposal involved the densification/repopulating these spaces. This was achieved through the provision of a series of tower houses providing views over the harbour and town while also creating interesting spatial hierarchies at lower levels to offer more viable pedestrian pathways thus repurposing these back spaces as accessible thoroughfares and places for social interaction between buildings. The project, although controversial in its execution aims to raise questions of how close we can live together comfortably and in what formats.
I was very excited to find out that my thesis project has been selected to be presented at the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh as part of the New Contemporaries Exhibition 2015 - a curated annual exhibition which focuses on emerging artists and architects in Scotland. My work was also selected to receive one of the RGU Purchase Prize Awards 2014 so all in all I’m extremely happy to have culminated my university career on a high and look forward the future and all it brings!