New Arts Complex
Value: £17 million
Date: Under construction
The Southampton New Arts Complex, due to complete in 2017, will provide a new visitor attraction at the heart of Southampton’s cultural quarter of museums, galleries, theatres and music venues, situated around Guildhall Square. CZWG designed the new mixed use arts scheme for Grosvenor Developments as part of Southampton’s major cultural quarter development. The 6,000 sqm complex brings two world-class arts organisations (Nuffield Theatres Southampton and the John Hansard Gallery) into the city centre for the first time, together with media and film specialists City Eye.
CZWG’s innovative design provides a truly mixed-use development, with space in the North Building for a 445 seat flexible auditorium, 135 seat studio performance space, a café, dance studio, and education and community workshop spaces, while the South Building will accommodate the John Hansard Gallery with over 600 sqm of exhibition space and education facilities, a shop and City Eye. Ground floor accommodation includes a range of cafes and restaurants, creating a symbiotic relationship with the arts complex, while 38 high-end apartments on the upper floors take advantage of views across the Guildhall Square, the Grade II listed Andrews Park and The Solent.
The focus for the development is the arts space entrances, scaled to frame the Guildhall portico opposite. They complete the square, their symmetry emphasising its formality, connecting the two buildings together and giving equal weight to each. The buildings set behind are then able to develop in their own individual ways, acknowledging the asymmetrical site footprint as well as their differing accommodation requirements. The whole development contains approximately 12,500 sqm split into two buildings either side of a new pedestrian route which connects the square with the park.
The residential units were completed in March 2016 with the arts facilities due to open in 2017.