Liveable Leeds Competition
Leeds Civic Trust
Eastside of Leeds
Follow the Pipes!
Can you imagine a city where people are prioritised over vehicles?
As part of the Liveable City competition hosted by the Leeds Civic trust, we have been exploring opportunities to create better connections between the Eastside of Leeds and the City Centre.
This area is due for a large amount of residential development and although close in proximity to the urban centre, it is dislocated from it by the national rail line that carves across the city East-West, and the A roads North-South. These leave an uninspiring and increasingly dangerous route for walkers and cyclists in and out of the city.
We conceived a safe route, with pockets of greenspace and overpasses leading to a new urban forum – a destination that provides much needed neighborhood amenities but is also celebrates of the identity of the Eastside.
The new route joins underground water pipes of the new district heating system as they pass through the Energy Centre and connect to homes in Eastside to those to north of the city.
The system is the most recent in a history of industry and innovation in the area. So we thought this synthetic water course could be celebrated as part of its identity rather than buried, exposing part of the pipes at ground level but also extruding sections upwards to create focal points along the journey.
Crossing the A61 south, the route meets the cultural quarter just south of the rail line and the bus station – in a new public forum reclaimed from re-routing the northbound traffic, where vast areas of tarmac are re-imagined as green space and public realm. Here we imagine how we could build a positive relationship with Leeds’ natural water courses, by incorporating permeable surfaces, interconnected rain gardens and an urban basin that swells to manage water level rises over Lady Beck.
Opportunities lay in the re-purposing of existing buildings, and we explore how weaving heritage and new interventions together could create an exciting and vibrant creative neighbourhood for Loiners and visitors alike.