RIBA chooses Broadway Malyan’s Mann Island for new national centre

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) will open a new national architecture centre, RIBA North, in August on the Waterfront in Liverpool.

The centre will be at Mann Island which was designed by Broadway Malyan and won a RIBA North West Award for architecture in 2015.

RIBA North’s bold programme of exhibitions including the historic RIBA Collections – the nation’s richest resource of architecture drawings, photographs and prints from the late 15th century to the present day.

RIBA President Jane Duncan said:

“We’re thrilled to announce that RIBA North will open in Liverpool this summer. The new exhibition gallery, with museum conditions, will offer a magnificent opportunity to display RIBA’s historic collections, telling hundreds of years of the UK’s extraordinary architectural history.

“The prominent high-footfall location of our new gallery on the Waterfront, next to the Three Graces, the new Museum of Liverpool, Liverpool One and the attractions of the Albert Dock will help us to reach a wide audience. The new facilities, alongside conference and event space, will mean we can offer even greater support to all our members in the region.”

The centre’s opening exhibition Liverpool: Mover, Shaker, Architecture Risk Taker will show designs for Liverpool that were never built.

Those include un-built proposals for the city’s Anglican Cathedral by Sir Charles Nicholson and Philip Webb; a radical scheme by Sir Denys Lasdun from 1959 for the Catholic Cathedral site and a bold vision for a new skyline by Graeme Shankland from the 1960s after two thirds of the city’s buildings were declared to be obsolete.

Visitors can watch a newly commissioned film, reflecting on Liverpool’s architectural audacity, its willingness to consider unconventional schemes and how this has resulted in the dramatic and celebrated skyline we see today.

RIBA said they will confirm the opening date later this month.