Tim Gledstone | impressions

Squire & Partners

World Architecture Festival 2018 | Prominent features of the project

The Department Store design concept draws on the existing building’s history, location and heritage, as well as a desire to create a new way of working and engaging with the community around us. Our response is particular to the building and it’s past, as a celebration of the layers of history from its grand beginnings to an extended period as a squat, with nothing glossed over.

We also sought to expand on existing relationships with design and manufacturing industries to create something unique which would do justice to the craftsmanship evident in the original building. Collaborations with manufacturers and artists elevated the finished building to become an interactive showcase to craft and making. Creating spaces for complementary functions to benefit the local area – such as event and exhibition space, restaurants, a vinyl shop and a community Post Office – ensure the building is animated throughout the week


WAF presents a wonderful opportunity to gather architecture and design communities from around the world, celebrating the best projects and allowing visitors a valuable insight into the ideas behind each project. The main stage featured a variety of high calibre speakers, and the rest of the campus had an engaging array of activities. Trade elements of the show have the potential for growth, perhaps as a showcase of the best emerging materials and innovations in the industry. This would need careful curation to ensure a balance of exhibitors and interesting content.

The three day format helps practice’s engage with a wide range of people, and generates excitement as the festival progresses. WAF was excellent for bringing together pillars of the industry in one place.