Although it is utopia and it’s not going to be built any time soon – Atelier Zündel Cristea is awarded first prize at the ArchTriumph architectural competition for converting Battersea Power Station in London into a museum wrapped in giant roller coaster –the idea was that visitors get a full view of the museum by taking a ride on a roller coaster that encircles and slices through the iconic brick building.
The winning entry puts Sir Giles Gilberts’s building on center stage and its structure enhances the site through its impressive scale, architecture and unique material. Together with Tate Modern, located down the river, it served as a clear inspiration and the new project is organized in and around it. In words of architects it is not the exhibition of works that has meaning in museums, but the presence of visitors and their wandering through and exposure to displays of works that stimulate meaning. Therefore new floors and galleries inside the central building and on the roof will host exhibitions on architecture from the modern era to as far back as the Middle Ages and the pathway links together a number of diverse spaces – the square in front of the museum, footpaths outside and above and inside, footpaths traversing courtyards and exhibition halls. Visitors are active participants of the process, experiencing simultaneously displayed works and being exposed to the beauty of the structure and the city itself – the river, park and architecture.
Londoners still hope that the current developers will reconsider their plans for turning the site of the power station into the building site for a centerpiece of a new 3,400 luxury home development.