“Through our design an outdoor area has been created that has provided vital space for young people to gather in a controlled environment.”
Sue Whiteley, Head of Landscape Architecture, Concertus
The Brief: The Mix is a world class multi-purpose youth facility for young people and the community in the heart of Stowmarket. We were asked to design an outdoor area that would enhance the Children & Young People’s Services.
The Aim: Driven by the active participation of young people and their views and needs, the requirement of the project was to create a new and exciting place for young people to meet friends, try new activities and use facilities that they don’t have at home such as a music studio and performance spaces.
The Scope: Concertus oversaw an evolving multi-disciplinary team, heavily focused on collaboration and the needs of young people. The overriding design philosophy was that the building conveyed an “Alice in Wonderland” ideology, where the front façade conceals all the activities inside.
The first floor accommodation benefits from a direct connection with a line of trees on the Southern Boundary. This, not only ties the building to the changing seasons, but allows the tree canopy to screen the building from neighbouring properties.
By utilising the fall across the site and forming three-storey elements, the developed site is less than 60%. This enables the formation of an undercroft, together with courtyard gardens providing vital space for young people to gather in a controlled environment.
The Result: The result is a place properly the youths, but without the negative stigma of adults believing they are up to no good.