Competition launched to redevelop Leeds City Square

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) has launched a competition on behalf of Balfour Beatty and Leeds City Council.

The competition is seeking a multi-disciplinary design team to redevelop Leeds City Square and create a world class and vibrant piece of inclusive public realm, which responds positively to the city’s diverse population, cultural richness and to the city’s climate change ambitions.
Leeds is a dynamic and attractive city with a walkable city centre. The true nature of its architecture and spaces are best experienced on foot or by bicycle. Currently, areas of the city centre prioritise vehicle movement and do not sufficiently cater for people seeking space to relax, shop, exercise, cycle and play. To help combat this, earlier this year, Leeds City Council launched the Our Spaces strategy, which sets out how public spaces across the city will be developed to be vibrant and inclusive.
The strategy is a call to action to ensure that the delivery of new and improved public realm meets the council and the city’s vision for the creation of world-class and inclusive spaces. The City Square development is a central part of this city-wide plan; it is a key gateway into the city for thousands of visitors, residents and workers. For many, it provides their first glimpse of Leeds, so it is vital that the space reflects how vibrant, culturally rich and inclusive the city is.
Councillor Judith Blake, leader of Leeds City Council, said: “We created the Our Space strategy to set out our vision to transform and create world-class and inclusive public spaces across Leeds that directly contribute to an improvement in the health and well-being of our residents. The redevelopment of City Square is at the heart of this, and the chosen design will create a space which benefits everyone, responds to our climate challenges and cultural ambitions as well as capturing what makes Leeds so fantastic. As the city begins to recover from the pandemic and we look forward to a thriving future, our public realm holds even more importance and I am looking forward to seeing the proposals for the transformation.”
In the first instance the Competition is seeking Expressions of Interest in response to the Memorandum of Information document. It is anticipated that up to five teams will be shortlisted and invited to participate in the design phase of the competition.
An equal honorarium of GBP £6,000 (+VAT) will be paid to each of the shortlisted teams.
Applications are invited in accordance with the requirements set out in the Memorandum of Information, which is available here:
The deadline for receipt of applications is 14.00hrs on Tuesday 27 October 2020. 

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