Preston Bus Station plans out next week

The five shortlisted designs for a £13m arts facility for young people within the grade two-listed Preston Bus Station are due to be revealed at a public exhibition on Thursday 16 July and Friday 17 July.

A design competition for the bus station was launched in February. According to Lancashire County Council nearly 100 entries were received.

The brief was to improve the connectivity from the bus station through to the wider city centre, offering an attractive new civic space and encouraging further development of the surrounding area.

The new Preston Youth Zone will occupy around half of the space on the Holiday Inn side of the building, with a separate sports hall on the apron outside. The Youth Zone will feature an indoor sports hall, outdoor pitches, a climbing wall, fitness suite and areas for music, dance, arts and crafts.

The next stage of the competition will give people an opportunity to choose their favourite entry. The designs will be on show at the bus station on 16 and 17 July, or online at between 16 and 21 July only.

The competition is being run by the Royal Institute of British Architects, on behalf of Lancashire County Council and Preston Youth Zone.

Bidders’ names have been removed from their entries so judging is anonymous.

The construction contractor for the project works will be appointed from the council’s own construction framework.

The concrete bus station was completed in 1969 and designed by BDP.

For many years Preston City Council sought permission to demolish the building, citing excessive maintenance costs. The building was listed for protection due to its heritage value as an example of brutalist architecture in 2013. Lancashire County Council purchased the building in December 2013.

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