Photo Credit: Barbican Centre, Max Colson

A collaborative design team led by architects Allies and Morrison and Asif Khan Studio, has been selected to deliver a multi-million-pound renewal of the Barbican Centre.

The project will preserve the iconic building’s original architectural vision, provide new opportunities for the Barbican’s diverse community of artists, audiences, organisers, delegates and partners, and boost the building’s accessibility and environmental performance.

The winning team, chosen from a five-team shortlist, also includes engineering and sustainability consultancy, Buro Happold; heritage experts from Alan Baxter Ltd; theatre, acoustic, and digital consultancy, Charcoalblue; landscape architects, Hood Design Studio, lighting design agency, les éclaireurs, and artistic advisors Isaac Julien and Nadia Fall.

The team has considerable experience in major heritage and cultural projects, and has delivered projects for organisations including Tate Britain, the V&A, Royal Festival Hall, Shakespeare’s Globe, Oakland Museum of California, and more.

Head of Barbican Business Events, Jackie Boughton, said: “As a globally renowned arts and learning centre as well as a venue for conferences, meetings and events, the Barbican needs to continually evolve and develop its offering to remain relevant to the needs of organisers and delegates. The renewal project is an incredibly exciting opportunity that will see the venue realise its full potential for years to come and the Business Events team looks forward to sharing the progress of the multi-million-pound renewal.”

Photo Credit: Barbican Centre

Their winning vision has sustainability at its core, with a strong focus on reusing and retrofitting existing spaces to minimise the project’s carbon footprint and environmental impact. This approach will make sensitive and sustainable improvements that will retain and respect Barbican’s Grade II listed architecture while bringing underused spaces into new creative use.

“For all of us, this will be the project of a lifetime.”

The winning design team’s vision will now be refined and developed, including extensive engagement with the Barbican’s stakeholders. Multiple design options will be created for the project, which will be deliverable within a construction budget of £50m to £150m. The budget for the project is subject to approval by elected Members of the City Corporation.

Each year, over a million people attend Barbican Centre events performed by hundreds of artists from across the globe. The Barbican is currently rolling out a new creative vision which will be the driving force for a more inclusive, diverse, and accessible arts and education centre, where everyone feels they belong.

Photo Credit: Barbican Centre, Max Colson

The Barbican Centre is a key part of Culture Mile, the City of London’s cultural district, stretching from Farringdon to Moorgate. Led by the City of London Corporation, with the Barbican Centre, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London Symphony Orchestra and Museum of London, the five partners are together creating a vibrant, creative area in the north-west corner of the Square Mile.

The City Corporation, which is the founder and principal funder of the Barbican Centre, is the fourth largest funder of heritage and cultural activities in the UK and invests over £130m into culture every year.

The selected design team was drawn from an impressive pool of high-calibre submissions from the talented UK and international design-led bids.

Further information about the project and the brief can be found here.

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