Viewing posts from : May 2016



Leeds Kirkgate Market
May 9 / Property

Look up

Over time, things, buildings, and locations become part of the fabric. If you have lived somewhere all your life, or for a long time, it is easy to take things for granted.

I recently realised this when walking around Leeds, West Yorkshire. I focus on the shops, where I am going, trying not to get run over, what I’d like to eat etc. But, the other day, I looked up.

Leeds Kirkgate Market is renowned for a great bargain, excellent fish and small Japanese plants. But it turns out it is a stunning piece of architecture too. I have always been so focussed on what is inside, I have never paid proper attention to the very building the market sits in.

Just look at it. So at odds with the plain, boring, more modern buildings that surround it. Created in the 1800s, it is a truly magnificent building. I could stand there and take pictures of it all day, frankly. Now when I walk by, I tilt my heads upwards and take in the splendor. The building stands as a reminder of the rich history Leeds has to offer. It was the place where a little-known business called Marks & Spencer was founded, with a stall in 1884. It survived German bombs in 1941 and a raging fire in 1975.

In a way, it tells a story. A bland apartment building, does not. We should treasure and make the most of old building like this, not demolish and start again. Neither should they be turned into strange and largely pointless exhibits, but something actually useful that will be enjoyed by all.

Which leads me to the old BBC Television Centre, now converted into 5,000 new flats. Yes, it is nowhere near as old as Leeds Kirkgate Market, nor in my humble opinion, does it strike the same visual cord. But the design is no less dramatic or iconic. I’m very happy to see such a cool design still being renovated and put to good use.

So I urge you, to ‘look up’ the next time you visit any large town. Because whilst eating and shopping is great, there are many old treasures hidden in plain site. You never know, one of them may become your next property development.

Best of Ted
May 3 / Design, Property

Best of TED: Bjarke Ingels architecture tales

Wonderful architecture tales are those that completely blow your mind. To see the final product itself is usually incredible enough. But when you hear the story of how a building came to be, the wonder becomes so much more.

Bjarke Ingels, a danish architect, gave a talk at TED Global in 2009 where he explained the process behind 3 projects he developed, and the incredible stories of how he used nature in every element of design. From using it for a project management process, all the way through to buildings that don’t just look like nature, but act like it too.

Take a short break and invest 18 minutes in watching this TED Talk – we’re certain it will be well worth it for the inspiration alone.

Did you like the CGI animations at the end of Bjarke’s video? Take a look at our video service and see if we can help you create similar.

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