The Pedagogies of Re-use: Chadwick Tower – Make Eat Share

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A collage of 6 images showing student models of a repurposed tower block. The models are made from a variaty of media including cardboard, plastic and MDF.
Models by Studio CCS BA3 Students

As climate crisis unfolds, retrofit of existing buildings is an increasingly important area of practice which hasn’t traditionally been central to undergraduate architectural education. Since 2018 Studio CCS has worked with existing buildings on third year final projects with an evolving a pedagogy of adaptive re-use. In 2022-23 projects explored extending the life of Basil Spence’s Chadwick Tower which the University of Liverpool intends to demolish. Setting up the brief in opposition to the university masterplan encouraged critical thinking and freed up students to imagine creative solutions outside of damaging “business as usual” practices, redundant in a low carbon economy. Students gain confidence getting to know the building using archival material, visits and making models. Through the design process, students are encouraged to think tactically at different scales allowing complex interconnected problems to be explored one question at a time, rather than becoming overwhelmed by the scale of the task.

Image credite: Photograph by Sophie Percival, models by Studio CCS students 2022-3.