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Winner of new Students' Centre competition announced

LSE dayDublin based practice O'Donnell & Tuomey Architects have been chosen as the winners of the competition to design a new Students' Centre for the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) on its Aldwych campus. 

The centre will be located where St Philips currently stands and will house the Students' Union, playing a vital role in enhancing the student experience and in furthering the LSE's aim of creating a world class estate. The School's ambition is to procure an exemplary piece of architecture which is innovative, sustainable and inspirational, which will be at the forefront of 'Contemporary Westminster'.  

The practice was selected from a shortlist which included five other leading practices: Allford Hall Monaghan Morris; David Chipperfield Architects; de Rijke Marsh Morgan; Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios and Copenhagen based architects 3XN A/S. 

Howard Davies, Director of LSE and chair of the Jury Panel said: 'We really do appreciate the huge amount of creative energy each of the teams put into this competition. However there can only be one winner and the selection of O'Donnell & Tuomey was the unanimous decision of the Jury Panel.'

LSE nightSaid Julian Robinson, director of planning and development at LSE: 'I am convinced we have a scheme of world class potential that will become a seminal piece of university architecture. The approach of O'Donnell & Tuomey was sensitive, erudite and engaging. The narrative was very strong, which was reinforced by an excellent presentation.'

Sheila O'Donnell and John Tuomey said: 'We are delighted to win this opportunity to build a significant building in London, the city of our second schooling in architecture, at the centre of the street-based campus of the London School of Economics. We hope to make a special building for the Students' Union, one that derives from and contributes to the characteristics qualities of the LSE.'

The competition involved workshop sessions with the six design teams in their studios and a public exhibition which gave students the chance to meet with and discuss the design concepts with the shortlisted teams. Staff, students, alumni and governors were invited to vote online for their favourite design with this result providing an important steer for the jury panel. Final judging involved an interview at which the teams made presentations to the jury panel. 

Panel member and LSE Students' Union General Secretary Aled Dilwyn Fisher said: 'O'Donnell & Tuomey demonstrated that they would be an inclusive team, open to further discussion and consultation with the students, to deliver the building we need. Their concept is by far the most sustainable, and shows a building that will glow with light and activity at night, and be engaging, open and social at all times.'

The winning team will now work closely with LSE and its stakeholders to develop and deliver the concept.

See Proposal F to view the submitted designs from O'Donnell & Tuomey Architects


For further information on the competition contact :

29 June 2009