The Urban Food Exchange

The Urban Food Exchange (UFEX) projects aim was to create a space which can be used by a whole range of members of the community. The HUBs main aim is to create an immersive space to teach people about the food industry. The HUB will hold events for the community such as markets, social events, and once a month will hold a tasting evening where staff get to try out new recipes on friends, family and community members. The House situated on the site is to be used by members of the public, from far and wide, to come stay to create a completely immersive experience. The guests of the House will work in the HUB first learning about the production and will progress to the teaching of others. The guest can stay for any length of time, from two weeks to 6 months, or a year depending on what they personally wish to gain from the experience. When it came to the designing of these two buildings a key focus for me was sustainability. When it came to choosing materials recyclability and reusability were key considerations. The roof is thatched, the natural material is very self-sustaining and makes an excellent heat barrier aiding in keeping heating cost and energy use low.  Both the exterior and interior cladding is timber, one being charred and the other being oak, timber being a natural material is sustainable but more notably it is easily reused in the future. Design wise the key inspirations came from Japanese architecture and gardens; this was a specific choice as within the Japanese culture food is considered hugely important. The preparation and consumption of food within the Japanese culture is seen almost as a ritual and a celebration where families come together. These morals are aimed to be mirrored within the UFEX when it comes to bringing the community together and therefore creating a space inspired by this culture helps create that link. The HUB consists of a range of space with the two most notably being the production space and the assembly space, these two open spaces help encourage the flow of people, air and light throughout the building.

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