Open Competition - Walsall, West Midlands.
An open competition
The LEX site critically marks the gateway to both Walsall and the Waterfront area development when approaching the city from the M6 motorway. The landmark building is characterised by as series layers floating building volumes and leisure activities that are sandwiched between a ground floor public plaza deck and a series of overhead hovering roof elements. These floating roof elements create the emblematic character of this landmark development.
Each building block is embraced by a series gestures defined by “panels”, “flaps”, “skirts” and “cantles”. The front or “pommel” of the roof form has an adjacent skirt which is marked with the LEX graphic which also creates a structural support. This focus and the wrapping roof along the west elevation announces the arrival by car to both the Waterfront development and the City as a whole along the main arterial road of the A454 which connects to the M6 motorway.
The rear of the site has raised landmark element or cantle that is both visible from the new Walsall Art Gallery and marks the arrival by pedestrian or by boat from the canal on 3 sides.