shortlisted project

The Threshold: Home of Many Worlds

by Hannah Pether from University of Sheffield, School of Architecture, United Kingdom
Tutored by: John Sampson, Aidan Hoggard

Author comments:

Can thresholds – as active archives of daily life – be utilised to decipher and reconnect their wider fragmented contexts (physical, social, cultural), creating a sense of place in an otherwise transient city?

The thesis explores how leftover urban spaces – voids formed by courtyards mediating public and private space – offer the potential for re-engagement with the wider city.

Set within Offenbach, an ‘Arrival City’ comprising 156 nationalities, the proposal seeks to address the extremely high migrant population and population turnover inherent in such transient areas, limiting the right of many in the city to a conventional vote. It seeks to give each individual a voice and story within the city through a deconstructed parliamentary model, mediating domestic and civic space to create a place of integration, debate and refuge: a ‘city within a city’.

The project considers how a city can be read, and response curated, through its thresholds – spanning the scales of City, Street, Building, Body and Time. It interposes a vital pause, addressing the social, cultural, physical, experiential and temporal thresholds currently prevalent, and proposing how these interstitial spaces can be mediated. The site itself is microcosmic of Offenbach, mirroring the fluctuations in fortune, fabric and form of the wider city.

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