BLEECKER POP UP 2016
Location: Hungerford Bridge, London
Graphics: Mathilda Holmqvist
Mural: Robin Signs
Hoarding and furniture: Pankhurst Contracting
Container manufacturer: CNTNR
Proposal for a pop-up restaurant to form part of the Southbank Summer Festival 2016. The project included a public terrace facing on to the River Thames in a very prominent part of London. In order to meet the client’s needs, we approached the project as urban design and not as an isolated object.
The site was a 110 sqm area in London’s Southbank with views over some of the most iconic buildings in the city. Within walking distance of the Southbank Centre, Embankment and Waterloo, it sat under the Hungerford Bridge which industrial looking architecture gives the space a very urban character.
The area, which is regularly used to host markets of various kinds has a very defined pallet of materials as well as some very clear health and safety requirements to ensure rapid evacuation, should this be required.
Bleecker, are one of the original New York style burger flippers of London. A British brand with roots in the Big Apple, they came to us with a clear brief : They wanted to build on the success of the previous year and to address any concerns they may have been left with.
The site was in the centre of London, adjacent key city landmarks such as the London Eye and the Southbank Centre. It is significant that the rail lines which connect Charing Cross Station with Kent and surrounding areas runs immediately above the site.
London Southbank is one of the largest and most lively public spaces in central London, and each year, a team of professionals work hard on a range of programmes destined to engage the millions of visitors which visit London and we were keen to turning the space into a destination by using the design to increase visibility.
In past, the traders who have been lined up following the river, had not considered defining an enclosure and formalising the sitting area. Instead, their effort focused on cooking and serving the food. Our client, however, had identified the need to provide sitting as one of the lessons learned from the previous year.
The most important urban elements adjacent to the site the bridge, the Southbank centre with all its surrounding hard landscape and the River Thames. It was very earlier on we decided the most prominent face of the project should be addressing the latter. Looking out onto the river, allowed us to expand the sense of space beyond the edge of the Queen’s Walk on to the piers which support the bridge; giving the proposal the scale and quality of a urban square.