Hyde Park Square Memorial
Hyde Park Square Memorial
The wish of the client was to have a wooden pergola built to commemorate the late Head Gardener of Hyde Park Square.
Addressing the brief, particular emphasis has been put on the willing to have a structure where the wood is the leading actor, blending with the existing and yet be unexpected and original.
The permanent installation that we designed and constructed interacts with the beautiful vegetation of the award-winning garden and the surrounding townhouses architecture by using the repetition of wooden arches as link between the nature and the built environment.
It has been conceived by thinking about structures that can stir common memories, as it is the case of the arches: sacred architecture in every culture features magnificent arches as symbol of passage, as those naturally formed evoke poetic images of gateways.
Arches are also geometrically prone to support weights, since relevant was also the desire to investigate the dialogue between creativity and nature as integral part of the design and essential to the legacy of the project in time.
The pergola will be covered by climbing plants which will structurally embrace and support it over the years. In doing that, the arches are not the absolute protagonist of the pergola and accept that nature completes the work.
The pergola is formed by 11 arches of irregular shapes, as nature is also about imperfection.
To achieve those geometries, the wood is block laminated though the thickness, in five layers with the boards staggered to create stable and robust structures.
During the lamination process, stainless steel screws have been methodically inserted through the inner layers to provide extra mechanical strength to the glued parts - still allowing for the wood to expand and contract naturally.
Through this construction method the crown grain of the oak is exposed on the front faces, enhancing the effect of a solid bent piece of wood.
The arches have different heights, spanning between 2900mm to 3600mm and growing while walking toward the centre of the pergola.
They are arranged in four triangles to form a self-supporting geometry, joined at the top by curved metal bracings. While these are providing the required structural restrain, they will allow for the vegetation to complete the canopy and create four green rooms for the residents to walk through. Two carved oak stools provide the opportunity for seating.
The pergola is grounded using stainless steel brackets slotted at the end of the legs. To blend with the oak grain colour and in accordance with the structural engineer requirements, the visible fixings are in Corten finish.
client. Hyde Park Suqare Garden Committee