Baca is an award-winning architecture practice with an integrated environmental, landscape and design approach, specialising in building in, on or near water. The interaction of water and the built environment offer the opportunity to consider how engineering and aesthetics come together to create wonderful spaces. Over a decade of practice has evolved 3 disciplines of expertise: homes, masterplanning and research, each reinforcing one another in environmentally responsible, beautiful design.. This enables a holistic and intelligent approach to each project regardless of scale or complexity, from intelligent homes to smart cities.
FOR LUXURY ECO-HOTEL
Watermarks, RSAW Spring School
Baca were extremely pleased to be invited to speak at Watermarks, the Spring School of the Royal Society of Architects Wales. The conference had a fantastic programme offering insight into “Architecture in a fluid world” curated by Mary Wrenn. Geraldine Holland, Architect at Baca, spoke on behalf of the practice. Professor Jessica Lamond, Flood Risk Management at University of West of England, chaired the event, starting with an introductory presentation offering her extensive insight into working in flood risk. Lamond is an old friend to Baca Architects, having collaborated on the LifE project (Long-term initiatives for Flood-risk Environments) while she was at Defra over 10 years ago, as well as the World Flood Handbook. The first of several ‘inspiration hour’ talks was by Jankirk Hoekstra, Advisor and Landscape Architect, H+N+S Landschapsarchitecten, Amersfoort. Hoekstra gave a lively and informative presentation into the history of human intervention in flood resilience in Holland. “In a country where more than half the land is at or below sea level, flooding is a constant vulnerability for The Netherlands. Landscape architecture design office H+N+S describe their work as ‘engineering art’, contributing to a meaningful relationship between people and the environment” This history of sustainable approaches to construction to harmoniously inhabit a natural world place the Netherlands at the forefront of building for flood resilience and the UK look to their neighbour for insight into how to inform our practice here.Baca’s presentation touched on their vision of a world living harmoniously with the natural environment and change in climate, and how this vision is shared by Waterstudio, dutch based practice led by Koen Olthius. Geraldine Holland presentated 3 Baca case studies to illustrate the practical approach that Baca has evolved in looking to a future increasingly threatened by flood. In researching and studying flood environments over a decade, Baca are incrementally advancing changes in approach, step by step. This is a multi-pronged approach, starting with their design and planning guidance, going on to roles advising on policy with a firm basis in piloting the UK’s first amphibious house and other flood resilient construction methods. The Amphibious House is a favourite project of the practice and is perhaps the most well-known for having featured on television programme Grand Designs. This pioneering approach has led to other innovations. The Shipston Road development of 11 homes regenerates a brownfield site in the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon, which is flood zones 2 and 3. The careful neighbourhood planning, landscape and infrastructure design and construction methods come together in a highly technical strategy to ensure safe and dry homes in a beautiful residential environment where fluctuating water levels are celebrated in the gardens and recreation spaces. Tyram Lakes takes Baca Architects expertise into another dimension, that of a floating eco resort for a 5* leisure destination. The hotel has a fully integrated flood resilient strategy for building in Flood Zone 2. The floating lodges inhabit the lakes. The development regenerates a former industrial site to a flourishing natural environment for wildlife. Following this shared presentation described the changes to the University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea: ‘From waterside development to tidal lagoon – reflections on the ambitions of a city by the sea and the wider region. Jane Davidson, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Sustainability and Engagement, University of Wales Trinity Saint David, Swansea, and Pierre Wassenaar, Director, Head of Technology and Innovation Stride Treglown Architects, Cardiff told of their experience in the development of a fantastic piece of city, on the edge of the sea, is being reinvented as university campus. Finally, Simonetta Cenci and Alfonso Femia, of Ateliers Alsfonso Femia, gave an inspiring lecture on their multi-scale approach to architecture - simultaneously studying the wider city whilst crafting fine details of public space. Their presentation of Genoa as a changing waterfront port city demonstrated the practices ability to balance poetic and technical thinking. The Marseille project ‘Les Docks’ illustrates the practice as both fine artists, strategic urban planners and respectful community and heritage renovators. The site of Portmeirion was an absolute delight. The famous Welsh hospitality lived up to it’s name and the warmest welcome in Sir Clough William-Ellis’s stunning architectural icon. We hope to return next year!
Big announcement coming soon
Baca Architects and Craft: Pegg Landscape Architects have won a major UK competition of national importance. It’s very different to what we’re best known for plus it’s funded by the Chancellor. More news coming soon.
104 Bedroom hotel in South Yorkshire
Baca have commenced designs for a new eco-friendly hotel and spa resort in South Yorkshire. The Tyram Lakes Hotel and Spa will offer a unique luxury experience where visitors get back to nature in a resort that will minimize its impact on the environment. The hotel is being considered with several site-specific renewable power and heat generation systems and will be 70% off grid. The resort will form a completely closed water system without connection to mains water. Director Richard Coutts said: “We are creating a hotel that is good for you and for the environment. It makes me feel good.” The hotel provides 104 luxury rooms, fine dining restaurant, conferencing and meeting facilities, pool, superior spa and state-of-the-art gym, and picturesque party and wedding venue. Suites and a top floor bar provide panoramic views of the lakes and countryside beyond. Conferencing in the countryside will be a perfect space to free the mind and think those big ideas. The spa will feature an outdoor, and indoor swimming pool, six treatment rooms, and deep relaxation spaces. Guests will also be able to enjoy wild swimming in the lake.
Baca's retrospective in Dezeen
Baca Architects have been featured in Dezeen as part of their x MINI Living video series. This retrospective explores the “Aquatecture” of Baca Architects, which includes plans for floating houses, villages and even a Grand Prix track. This article highlights Baca’s interest in research and innovation which has driven the practice to its current position as one of the most innovative architectural practices in the UK. To watch the video, click on following link https://www.dezeen.com/2017/06/09/video-baca-architects-floating-architecture-homes-movie/
ACCREDITATIONS / AWARDS
Baca have received numerous awards from the project and research work from national organisations such as the RIBA and international organisations such as IULA. Prestigious awards include: the RIBA Presidents award for research, Urban Research Group-Practice of the year, Waterways Renaissance Award, International Urban Landscape Award and EU Regio Star Award.
TALKS & SEMINARS
THE WORLD'S LEADING FLOOD EXHIBITION AND CONFERENCE
12-13 Sep 2018
For the last decade Baca Architects have been championing theory and practice in flood mitigation. The practice has had endless ideas as to how society can live more safely and comfortably with water but have met many obstacles. '10 years: 10 steps forward' charts this process through policy and technical advancements, supplementary planning guidance, built work (our amphibious houses and others) and a new mass housing; sharing advice for the future
Click on the images to download our Baca brochures in pdf format.
WHY NOT GET IN TOUCH?
T: (+44) 020 7397 5620
A: 199 Long Lane,
London, SE1 4PN
21-23 November 2018
FLOATING CITIES DESIGN WORKSHOP
21-23 Nov 2018
12 Dec 2018
Baca secures planning for Tyram Lakes Hotel and Spa
Baca Architects have secured planning permission for a £25 million eco-sustainable luxury Hotel and Spa in South Yorkshire.
12 Dec 2018
Baca director awarded RIBA fellowship
Baca director Richard Coutts was recently awarded an RIBA fellowship for his work with water and flood mitigation.