World-first as RIBA seeks design ideas for Moorside nuclear development

In a World-first, designers from across the globe are being asked to come up with architecture and landscape ideas for Europe’s largest new nuclear power station.

NuGen’s Moorside power station in West Cumbria will benefit from “leading-edge design ideas” in an unprecedented creative competition involving the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) and the Landscape Institute (LI).

NuGen, who are developing plans to build three AP1000® reactors next to Sellafield Site, have commissioned two competitions – each with a prize fund of £25,000 – aimed at creating iconic designs at Moorside.

The first-of-a-kind competition for the nuclear industry will reward creativity in building design and landscaping of the Moorside Site and Associated Developments, with the aim of generating a positive lasting legacy for the region.

One of the competitions, run by RIBA, will be open to all qualified architects and will seek designs for various buildings including a visitor centre for the main site, an accommodation block and masterplan.

The other competition, for landscape architects, will be run by the LI and seeks the best creative and sustainable solutions for providing the setting for the Moorside development.  It is envisaged that significant arisings of excavated material from the construction of the main development will be used to generate screening and provide a permanent amenity for the local communities. The competition will be open to all chartered landscape architects.

Following the competition, a shortlist will be selected to progress through NuGen’s procurement process with the view of placing contracts for architect and landscape architect support to NuGen. The shortlisted designs will be selected by an independent panel of technical experts, including Sir Terry Farrell (the British architect and urban designer famous for work including the MI6 Building in London) and Paul Tiplady (former Chief Executive of the Lake District National Park Authority).

NuGen’s CEO, Tom Samson, said:

“NuGen wants to deliver the very best possible project for the people of Cumbria and are working with RIBA and LI to access their extensive network and ensure that we attract the very best design professionals to provide an iconic design and a positive legacy for years to come.

“Our project will generate up to 3.6GW of electricity, equivalent to seven per-cent of the UK’s requirements, from a sustainable low-carbon source. This competition is a World-first for a nuclear development.”

Jamie Reed, MP for Copeland, welcomed a competition to attract creative design ideas for Moorside:

“The community worked hard to attract nuclear new-build to the region, and it’s only right that the project will benefit from having the best possible design.

“Moorside will be transformational for Copeland. I am confident our best days are ahead of us… and this initiative will help deliver an iconic building, landscape and a lasting legacy that the region can be proud of.”