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18:30 - 20:00 4 September 2018

Only connect: why public spaces matter


Knowledge Centre | The British Library
96 Euston Road | London | NW1 2DB | United Kingdom

Open to: Alumni | Public | Academic | Student
Admission: Free
Ticketing: Ticketed

Speaker information

Amanda Levete, Director, AL_A, Amanda Levete CBE is a RIBA Stirling Prize winning architect and founder and principal of AL_A, an international award-winning architecture studio. Since its formation in 2009, AL_A has refined an intuitive and strategic approach to design. Recently completed projects include the Victoria & Albert Museum Exhibition Road Quarter (2017) in London; MAAT (2016), a Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology in Lisbon; Central Embassy (2017), a 1.5 million sq ft luxury shopping mall and hotel in Bangkok; and a 13-hectare media campus masterplan and a 37,700m2 headquarters building for Sky (2016) in London. Ongoing commissions include the transformation of the flagship Galleries Lafayette department store on Boulevard Haussmann in Paris; a new centre for the cancer care charity Maggie’s in Southampton; two new buildings for Wadham College at the University of Oxford and the Monte St Angelo subway station in Naples.

What makes good public space? And, as architects, how can we design public spaces that allow these exchanges to happen?

What is the role of our institutions in the creation of public space? Can they be risk takers in a risk-averse world? And how can we persuade them of the nobility of pushing limits and advancing the debate?

Public spaces create countless opportunities to connect across thresholds: connecting people of different nationalities and from different walks of life. When you connect people, relationships are formed and thresholds become more about mutual exchange.

Exploring these ideas through two AL_A projects – the V&A Exhibition Road Quarter in London and MAAT in Lisbon – Amanda Levete will examine the purpose and value of public spaces and the impact they can have on public organisations.


Velvet Young
+44 (0) 20 7679 5244 | velvet.young.13@ucl.ac.uk


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