RIBA Stirling Prize 2001
Design Week Awards Leisure Environments Winner 2002
Civic Trust Exterior Lighting Award 2002
RIBA White Rose Award 2001
FX / Blueprint Architecture Awards, Best Public Building - Refurbishment 2001
WilkinsonEyre won the RIBA Stirling Prize in 2001 for this transformation of a redundant steelworks to create the UK's first Science Adventure Centre. A series of interactive pavilions explain physical forces and their employment by science, organised by the Aristotelian elements of earth, air, fire and water – all essential to the steelmaking process.
Our design concept placed the four pavilions – one for eachelement – within the 400m long, 35m high main shed, connected by steel bridges and walkways. A fifth installation, the Big Melt, demonstrates to visitors the process of steel production for which the works were built and which was so important to the regional economy.
Each pavilion is designed to relate to its theme in a symbolic way: the Earth Pavilionis located in the basement below the ground slab, while the air pavilion is designed as a huge airship which seemingly floats in the space The Fire Pavilion is a matt black box containing a tornado of flame and the Water pavilion is enclosed by a coolly-lit wave formed from steel.