Great Northern Warehouse

University essay from KTH/Arkitektur

Author: James Britton; [2015]

Keywords: Nottingham; Library; Modern Ruin; Warehouse;


This thesis project is a study of a complex of historic, railway-goods warehouses in Nottingham (UK) that were internally destroyed by a fire two decades ago. The site has has become an erstwhile symbol of the city, a stark reminder of both a past age of prosperity and the century of post-industrial decline that ultimately followed.Now facing the threat of demolition, it is questioned whether it is possible to rescue the intrinsic potential of these ruins to radically transport us beyond the experience of the everyday city, to a unique and inhabitable space of transition between past and present.

This thesis also examins the changing role of the library in the 21st century and the future for this public institution as a vestibule for the transmission of local culture and history. This leads to the central question of the thesis project; is it possible - through the appropriate treatment of an industrial ruin - to begin a process of reconciliation with the past, one that can provide some kind closure to the cognitive dissidence caused by language and tone of this kind of architectural heritage and the limited prospects that city like Nottingham faces today.

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