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|Suffolk, United Kingdom
|Centros Miller / St Edmundsbury Borough Council
|Civic Trust Award
The Bury Society Award for Excellence
Wood Awards, Highly Commended
A multi-purpose performance space, The Apex forms the civic focus of Arc, our masterplan to regenerate a former cattle market in the Suffolk town of Bury St Edmunds.
The Apex borders Charter Square, a new south-facing public space created as part of Arc. The building continues the architectural language of the surrounding retail and residential development, with the use of concrete colonnades at street level and timber-framed gables above. The double-height foyer is imagined as an extension of the public realm, with a restaurant bridge overlooking the square.
Conceived as a modern ‘market hall’ that acts as a hub for local cultural activities, the building includes performance, conference and hospitality facilities. Dynamic floors and seating and screen walls give optimum flexibility to maximise the facilities’ potential for hire.
The main space is a 500-seat auditorium, articulated as a freestanding brick box within the overall building block. Designed to exacting acoustic standards, this can be configured for various formats including theatre-style seating, ‘in-the-round’ or promenade performance. A timber-lined pitched ceiling removed the need for sound-baffling devices and created generous loft spaces, which can be utilised for technical functions.