Public realm project transforms 14 streets and four public squares
Re-Form Landscape Architecture has unveiled new visuals for Hull’s planned £25 million public realm project, which will see the complete re-design of the city’s streets and public spaces ahead of its UK City of Culture status in 2017.
Hull City Council appointed the practice alongside engineering consultancy Arup at the end of 2014. The team is working with the council, construction consultancy Gardiner and Theobold, and public art specialist Beam, to design and deliver the first two phases of the project which aims to revitalise the city centre and to make Hull a world-class visitor destination.
This will be the first major redevelopment of the city centre since World War Two and includes 14 streets and four public squares. Re-Form’s designs connect the railway station with the retail quarter; the historic Old Town and Fruit Market and will include the planting of more than 70 mature trees.
The main civic square, Queen Victoria Square, will have new seating, a large water feature and a lighting installation entitled ‘The Golden Hour’ by light art specialist, Nayan Kulkarni.
The partly excavated site of the historic Beverley Gate, which marks the spot where King Charles I was refused entry to Hull in 1642, will be replaced with a new sculpture designed by architect Tonkin Liu and with a large public lawn.
The church wall within Trinity Square, in the heart of the Old Town, will be removed to create a flexible public space which includes café seating and provides an appropriate setting for the Grade I listed Trinity Church.
Hull’s streets will become artwork in their own right, as ‘The City Speaks’ project creates a series of imaginative installations with words and stories by British artist Michael Pinsky and local poet and writer Shane Rhodes, which will lead visitors through the city centre.
Work is set to start on site in September and is due to be completed by the end of 2016.
Andrew Price, director at Re-Form Landscape Architecture, said, 'This is an ambitious and exciting scheme that will completely redefine the way in which local people and visitors experience the public spaces in Hull city centre. It’s great to be collaborating with so many creative people on such a complex project. It’s rare that a city puts so much investment into its public realm, and yet it’s these spaces that really make a city work.'