NTU Architecture Subject Group


2050, the Victoria Embankment once used for recreation both in the river and on the fields has been left scarred by the relentless extraction of coal, like many places in and surrounding the city. The community are now in need of a space to come together, relax and heal themselves and the landscape.

The project exploits the possibilities of abandoned and seemingly inopportune sites. I have sought to create an atmospheric connection between the community and the vernacular landscape around the site, through the implementation of thermal baths and gardens.

The idea is to express the beauty in the raw state of the materials found all around us, as well as the substantial ecological benefits they hold.

Changing with the environment as the excavation would have, the project harnesses the sun, water and natural materials. As people travel down into the site the activity rotates through the day following the sun to create comfort, whereas the varying tiers of the site get used in relation to the suns position in the season. The water is harnessed and directed to pools that then vary in depth, in accordance with the rainfall.

Each space seeks to interact with the environment, time, weather, and materials. For example, the sound pool allows raindrops to echo through the chamber, drowning out thought and other senses, but yet when it is sunny at the height of the day the space allows for the light to reflect and radiate into the room from the two adjoining pools.

The excavation now combines the historical and geographical contexts of the site to house the current and future needs for connection in all senses of the word.

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Ben Smallwood
Student name
Ben Smallwood
BArch Architecture

BArch Architecture

The BArch (Hons) in Architecture course is focused on the creative and practical development of architectural design, investigated in a studio environment through a series of carefully considered practical and theoretical projects in a variety of spatial, social, cultural and topographical situations.

The purpose of the course is to align architectural concepts, thinking, techniques and values with current architectural thought and practice. It involves strategic thinking and creative imagination; problem-solving and research tasks; attention to detail and tectonic resolution; traditional and digital forms of representation; and public presentations and reviews. This course addresses the challenges of designing for diverse communities and cultures and develops Part 1 graduates with creative vision, practical skills and an ethical position in respect of the role of the architect in a globalised world.

Read more about the BArch Architecture course

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