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Creating Inspiring and Experiential Spaces

Billy Taylor House

Having the honour to have won the competition for the Billy Taylor House, we are excited to see its implementation in the near future. The proposed renovation for the new Billy Taylor House takes the original plans and cleans up the space with simple lines and divisions. Consolidating circulation and egress points, the aim is in maximising the efficiency and use of given space. The ground floor cafe and barber retail zones are lengthened to the extent of the plan, whilst maintaining storage and rear access. The cafe offers a variety of social settings in an open plan environment with large servery/ display area. The barber takes a similar linear approach and hopes to create a clinical, contemporary and textural space. At purely a plan exercise for these retail spaces, a proper branded retail environment is separately envisioned. The entrance to the upper levels is via a new side extension at the back. The extension is based on the proportions of the existing rear section, which essentially pushes out to create a double height entryway that leads to the first floor level. Upon arrival, the space is vast and open and welcoming. Taking advantage of the pitched roof, the proposal is to open up a portion of the attic floor to create a dynamic double height space with mezzanine. The first floor offers an open plan layout that integrates an outdoor terrace space for multi-functional use. The materiality of the floor offers continuity across inside/outside spaces To the side are 3 equal multifunction rooms with folding walls to create larger rooms as necessary. At the mezzanine/attic level, there is a strong line workbench for hot-desking/workshops that looks outwards through the new skylights. Above the void are also new skylights bringing in an abundance of natural light to an airy, bright communal hub. Programmatically, the new space is about a social community. The centre will act as a learning, working hub that encourages youth development and entrepreneurship through courses and workshops, as well as offering spaces and desks for start-ups. Enclosed spaces can be utilised as meeting rooms, classrooms, yoga rooms, and private hire functions. The idea of the space is to be designed as flexible and diverse as possible, drawing a crowd of community to interact and be socially engaging through a multitude of activities.

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