A Wild Habitat Resource

I grew up in the Lancashire countryside, surrounded by woods, hills and ravines with lots of wildlife and natural beauty. My move into Manchester’s urban environment has been exciting, with new surroundings huddled into a dense metropolitan setting, where tree’s and dry-stone walls are replaced with steel and concrete. Nonetheless, I often found myself seeking out parks or green spaces to try and help balance some of the stark backdrops within the City to help me relax, or alternatively travelled home so I could unwind and decompress.

Our assignment was to look at creating a new space within the Mayfield region of Manchester, which despite its rich industrial history, is now considered a neglected and abandoned part of the City. However whilst undertaking my research within the area I found that even though the old brick buildings had decayed, new forms of wildlife had found space to flourish and thrive, which led me to consider how they could be preserved and allow metropolitan citizens to experience nature without having to travel further afield. These experiences led to the inspiration for my Flux project – a term I have called ‘Inverted Green Ecosystems’ after posing myself the question “Can the industrial and the natural only exist when the other is removed, or can we use nature to positively impact the spaces we design?”.

I wanted my building to capture this state of transition, one which would re-pollinate the publics mind with one that considers the conservation of these small pockets of life that exist in some of the most unlikely places. A space that would inspire care for what lies beyond glass facades and high-rise blocks. A ‘wild habitat resource’ that stands-out, made of reclaimed materials from an Industrial past that is home to luscious foliage and a support system for wildlife.