by London Design Festival
The London Design Festival is delighted to announce that the Endless Stair, a visually and architecturally astonishing installation and one of the highlights of this September’s London Design Festival, will now be taking up residence on the lawn in front of the world-renowned Tate Modern from 13 September – 10 October 2013.
Professor Alex de Rijke, director of dRMM, the architects leading the design for the structure said, “Endless Stair is a temporary sculpture designed to be endlessly reconfigured. After initially considering a site at St Paul’s Cathedral, the London Design Festival team have decided the best location for the Stair’s debut is outside Tate Modern, Bankside. The programme of modern art and architecture, combined with the Thames panorama of London, provides a context to which dRMM’s Escher-inspired installation can make a distinctive contribution.”
Ben Evans, the Director of the Festival commented, “As one of Britain’s most prestigious cultural institutions and London’s most popular tourist attractions, Tate Modern is a magnificent setting for the Endless Stair. We are thrilled to bring the project to a site that will allow such a diverse audience to interact with this ambitious contemporary design structure.”
The Festival is grateful to Tate Modern for providing a stunning location for Endless Stair on the building’s north landscape.
Chris Dercon, Director at Tate Modern commented, “Tate is delighted to support the London Design Festival with a location for Endless Stair and we look forward to the installation becoming a major attraction of the Festival this September.”
The Endless Stair is the second hardwood structure that AHEC (American Hardwood Export Council) has commissioned for the London Design Festival in collaboration with Arup. While providing a unique public experience to celebrate imaginative design in London, these collaborations have an important technical design legacy and challenge current thinking within the construction industry.
Endless Stair Facts
• American tulipwood (Liriodendron tulipifera) is one of the most abundant timbers in North America. It has excellent structural properties.
• There is a total of 11.4 tonnes of tulipwood in the Endless Stair and none of it will be wasted. The project has been designed to be reconfigured and re-used.
• Cross-laminated timber is an increasingly popular construction material. It is normally made from softwood. This pioneering use of hardwood cross-laminated timber reduces the amount of material needed and the thickness of the elements.
• The total length of all the panels in the endless stairs is 436m – equivalent to 4.5 times the height of Big Ben.
• The Endless Stair has a total of 187 steps. The shortest route to the top is 48 steps.
• Arup estimates that a maximum of 93 people will be on the Endless Stair at any one time.
• The Endless Stair will be accessible during daylight hours. At night it will be lit with an artistic lighting scheme by Seam Design using luminaires provided by Lumenpulse.
• Endless Stair will have a full environmental profile; all the material, transport and manufacturing processes are being recorded and Sustainability Consultants, PE International, will produce a report to identify the life cycle impacts.
Endless Stair will be open to the public from 13 September – 10 October, located on the lawn in front of Tate Modern, Bankside, SE1 9TG
Monday – Sunday 9am-dusk
Client: London Design Festival
Design: dRMM Architects – timber studio, ARUP Engineering Structures, Material and Fire Specialists
Sponsor: American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC)
CLT production: Imola Legno
Lighting Designer: SEAM
American tulipwood kindly donated by:
Allegheny Wood - www.alleghenywood.com
Blue Ridge Lumber - www.blueridgelumber.com
J&J - email@example.com
Northland Corporation - www.northlandcorp.com Northland Forest Products - www.northlandforest.com Pike Lumber Company - www.pikelumber.com Shenandoah Hardwood Lumber Co - www.shlco.net Verde Wood International - www.verde-wood.com
Thanks to TMX Shipping - www.tmxship.com Image credit: Cityscape
About American Hardwood Export Council americanhardwood.org
The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) is the leading international trade association for the U.S. hardwood industry, representing the committed exporters among U.S. hardwood companies and all the major U.S. hardwood product trade associations. AHEC concentrates its efforts on providing architects, specifiers, designers and end-users with technical information on the range of species, products and sources of supply.
AHEC produces a full range of technical publications which are available free of charge by visiting www.americanhardwood.org
Arup is the creative force at the heart of many of the world’s most prominent projects in the built environment and across industry. From 90 offices in 35 countries our 11,000 planners, designers, engineers and consultants deliver innovative projects across the world with creativity and passion.
dRMM is a London-based studio of architects and designers, founded in 1995 by Alex de Rijke, Philip Marsh and Sadie Morgan. The practice takes pride in carrying out work that is innovative, high quality and socially useful. We have a track record of creating extraordinary architecture within the standard constraints of the construction industry. Our radical projects are led by site, client needs, concept and construction, rather than formulaic or style-based decisions. Since 2000 dRMM has pioneered the use of, and applications for, engineered timber as a relevant material for 21st century architecture.
To set-up an interview with the project architect, receive further information and pictures, please contact Ann Dingli on +44 20 7803 0777 or ann@ drmm.co.uk
Imola Legno imolalegno.com
Imola Legno is Italy’s leading timber distribution company with a great passion for wood and for its enormous versatility. The company offers customised semi-finished products suitable for different industries. Imola Legno is aware of its environmental responsibility towards the world’s forest resources and therefore is committed to deliver only products that are legally sourced.
Nüssli is a leading, globally operating supplier of structures for events, trade fairs, exhibitions and in other applications in which temporary space is required. The combination of long-standing expertise, in-depth know-how and an international network ensures the focused, cost-efficient delivery of every Nüssli project. Nüssli’s success is driven by its reliability and commitment to excel. The company delivers individually tailored, integrated solutions whose hallmarks are high quality and quick turnaround time – from concept to final implementation.
Key products include grandstands, modular stadiums, trade fair stands and pavilions. Nüssli can also provide the entire infrastructure for individual events. The company’s wide-ranging products and services, combined with in-house planning and production capabilities, make Nüssli unmatched as a solutions provider to the worldwide events industry.