Wakeford Hall Library
The multi-layered Wakeford Hall project is AA Design + Make’s most ambitious to date – eventually providing new academic hub at the centre of the Hooke Park campus. As Studio Tutor for the programme I have been intimately involved in the project’s development from early design phases, through prototyping and final erection on site, to our current design development of next stages. The library’s skeletal structure was developed through numerous iterations of drawing, modeling and prototyping – with each of the its 14 frames being robotically sculpted using a bandsaw made in-house.
Considering how industrial processes for laminating timber might be worked into the Hooke Park style, we developed innovative methodologies for the production of bespoke laminated frames. The project’s development reflects a back and forth between studio discussions, workshop experiments and discussions with many parties. Marks of both the processes and tools that produced it remain present in the finished object – from tree growth to digital fabrication. The skeleton will act as a scaffold structure upon which to carefully attach the library’s skin. A thorough Lidar survey of the assembled structure has allowed us to analyse a 3D scan point cloud in order to ensure that design decisions are based on the assembled reality. With images from: Aitor Almarez, Kevin Kim and Veda Barath.