Future perfect: a new era for Preston Bus Station

Future perfect: a new era for Preston Bus Station

Designs by John Puttick Associates go on display alongside archive material and new photography at the London offices of engineers Skelly and Couch, in a new exhibition entitled ’Preston Bus Station and Youth Zone’.

Designed by local firm Building Design Partnership (BDP) and completed in 1969, the Preston Bus Station had been threatened several times with demolition, before the iconic Brutalist structure became a Grade II listed building in 2013 and plans for its restoration ensued.

Winning the RIBA-initiated competition earlier this year, the architecture firm John Puttick Associates will work on the restoration, and are looking to streamline the original architecture by clearing the interiors of distractions, consolidating entrances and creating a new central entrance hall. The Helvetica typeface will be reintroduced for signs and colours will be returned to their original palettes.

The new youth centre has a translucent entranceway and is planned around a double height performance space

In addition to the refurbishment of the station, a youth centre was commissioned by Lancashire County Council to add valuable community purpose to the site. Designed by the same architects as ’a pavilion to the palace’, the ‘Youth Zone’ building falls into step with the strongly tiered lines of Preston Bus Station’s concrete canopies, with four unevenly tapering levels and a colonnade facing the façade of the bus station.

Presented alongside the designs, photographs by Gareth Gardner capture the building pre-restoration and show the enduring prowess of Preston Bus Station nearly 50 years on – a credit to the original architecture. Archive material of the original designs by BDP will also be on display, helping to put together a portrait of Preston Bus Station as it is about to move forward into a new era.

Construction is scheduled to begin imminently and the restoration will be complete by early 2018. The Youth Zone will break ground in September 2017.

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