Posted in Architecture, Cambridge, Re-blog

Survival of the fittest: HKPA’s ideas competition for Darwin College

HKPA allsorts

Studying the drawings at HKPA’s archive last summer, I noticed this label on ‘roll 24’:

IMG_8415.JPG

These, I discovered, are the drawings for HKPA’s in-house ideas competition for their additions to Darwin College, Cambridge (designed 1965-6, built 1967-8). It’s slightly ironic that while these have survived, the practice’s main set of drawings for the job appear to be missing (although Darwin retain a full set).

The base drawings – showing existing buildings – are dated 4 March 1965, so I suppose the competition was held a little after that date. Bill Howell mentioned an ‘office competition’ when presenting a revised scheme to the College in May. Most of the entrants had a go at the challenge of slotting a new dining hall into a narrow gap between the Hermitage (left on the photo below) and Newnam Terrace (right), ensuring privacy and security for those in the garden while maintaining visual connections…

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"I have forgot much, Cynara! gone with the wind, Flung roses, roses riotously with the throng" — Earnest Dowson, 1867 –1900 Non Sum Qualis Eram Bonae sub Regno Cynarae (1896) (Excerpt)
The lovely image of an owl is courtesy of Michael Gäbler [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons. The coffee image is public domain

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