The City’s largest open space is set to undergo a major revamp to transform it into a “haven for people and wildlife”, the City of London Corporation announced today.
Finsbury Circus Gardens, London’s oldest public park, will see a new “secret garden”, urban forest and multi-purpose garden pavilion transform it into an “active cultural hub” for the Square Mile.
Hackney-based practice Architecture00 and Studio Weave (00SW) was today announced as the top pick from a shortlist of five in the Corporation’s £2.8m competition to redesign the Grade II-listed site.
The firm will install a new pavilion in the 413-year-old garden, featuring a cafe and events space with capacity for up to 100 people.
Oliver Sells, chairman of the City of London Corporation’s Open Spaces and City Gardens Committee, said the winning bid “successfully captured our vision for a biodiverse, 21st century park which respects the historic nature of the site and complements the buildings that surround it”.
“The redesign will restore the park to what it has been in the past – the jewel in the crown of our City Gardens and an urban oasis accessible to all, where people can come to exercise, socialise and relax,” he added.
The makeover comes after the park was closed for more than a decade to allow Crossrail construction between Farringdon and Liverpool Street.
A historic drinking fountain dating back to 1902, which was relocated to make way for the Crossrail works, will now be reinstated.
“We are excited to be working on this historic site, which is the largest and oldest public open space in the City,” said Je Ahn, director as 00SW.
“Our proposal builds on the existing history of the garden and is influenced by the magnificent architectural context of its surroundings.”