RAW teamed with Gareth Hoskins Architect (Glasgow, Great Britain) for this invited international competition.
The building is composed of a series of angled planes that peel out of the landscape of the park and connect beneath the Gardiner to create a new public arrival space addressing the streets and community developing around the site.
The first of these angled planes forms a hard landscaped pathway passing from Fleet Street, beneath the portal of the Gardiner to a point on the southern edge of the park that bisects the original Garrison Road – a place where visitors can either step out into the landscape of the park or enter the Centre to embark on an interpretive journey towards the Fort. The presence of the new Centre is signaled by a glowing glass ‘lightbox’ containing the changing feature exhibition space that nestles against the angled form of the building and looks back out towards the neighbourhood, providing a visual link to the current shoreline whilst illuminating the new arrival space.
Having passed beneath the Gardiner, or arrived from one of the diverse entry points of the park, visitors enter into the main public spaces of the Centre, enclosed beneath two further angled planes whose landscaped surfaces appear to rise out of the parkland. These angled roof planes contain two groups of spaces set either side of a central route aligned along the line of the Garrison Road towards the western entrance of the Fort. This central route creates a clear sense of direction and orientation for visitors, so that whilst moving through the various spaces within the Centre, they are always returning back to this axis and the view, focused towards the Fort.