The rationale behind the project was to maximise the economic impact of the growing creative sector, addressing historical under-performance in the West Midlands and the retention of talent in the region. The Performance hub was envisioned as an innovative, flexible, multi-purpose building where knowledge acquisition could take place in a range of formal and informal areas without rigid boundaries between teaching and learning space.
Integrating the spearate and distinct needs of the three Schools within one building needed careful consideration as the combined brief included a variety of noise intensive and quiet spaces. It was the resolution of these conflicting adjacencies that drove the internal and external organisation of the completed building.
The external expression of the building reflects the internal organisation. The performance block, which houses the ‘black box’ theatre, is robustly expressed with green copper cladding with abstract punched window openings with coloured linings, set on a base of black metal panels containing get-in doors. The main teaching block is clad in a contrasting oxidised copper cladding and has a dramatic sloping wall and roof profile and super graphic signage to form a new marker of the campus to the Broadway.