public works and 30 Bird worked with pupils at St Matthew's Primary School to design The Factory. This is the first of five structures to be built by this unique partnership of performance makers, pupils and architects. Titled MUD it is a key part of a long-term project linked to the redevelopment of the school premises. The structures are designed to be outdoor play structures and also to house arts and cultural events open to the public – playgrounds for imagination that are open to all.

Over an 18 month period public works and 30 Bird worked closely with pupils, teachers, non-teaching staff, parents and the surrounding community, capturing their stories and triggering their imaginations. The children actively participated in the architectural design process.

When asked about the project, a St Matthew's pupil said "We've never done anything like this before. I wish we could do more"

The Factory launched on Wednesday 27 November with music from the school choir and Mawson Street Community Orchestra.


public works will be speaking at this Urban Research Unit event:

Economics of the Future City will broadly explore the influence of future economic trends on the development of London as a city. The event aims to examine a number of topics including community based currencies, social housing and private development, the influence of national/ global economic conditions on urban growth and the role of the cultural sector in recording and responding to the dramatic changes to our urban centres.

Jackie Sadek (Chief Executive Officer, UK Regeneration)
Elizabeth Cox (Senior Economist, New Economics Foundation)
Charles Kriel (Managing Director, 12 Stories Tall)
Keith Brewis (International Managing Partner, Grimshaw)
Andreas Lang (Director, public works) 

The Urban Research Unit is a joint initiative that will consider and challenge the conventional approach used to plan and develop contemporary urban centres. Urban Research Unit (URU) is a one year initiative of Grimshaw Architects and Futurecity aimed at developing a fresh approach for intelligent and creative urban placemaking within the context of New York and London.

Grimshaw offices
57 Clerkenwell Road
London EC1M 5NG
United Kingdom



Extra Ordinary Knowledge provides a showcase for fantastic examples of local knowledge and skills. To those 'in the know' these might seem 'everyday' but to the rest of us they can seem like magic! Come along and experience a Smörgåsbord of skills: from sign writing to comfrey fertiliser production, bamboo bikes to brewing!


12.00 Introduction by Nina Pope, Somewhere & Andreas Lang, public works
12.15 — 13.00 Drop-in Films on Making (left) (on board the Floating Cinema)
13.00 Melissa Ronaldson from The Herbal Barge presents Anti-microbials from your kitchen & towpath - a response to the antibiotic resistance crisis
13.40 Homemade Drones with Anish Mohammed
14.10 All things Comfrey with Charlie Seber
14.30 The Beauty of Brewing with Shane McNamara, Crate Brewery
15.10 — 15.30 Drop-in Films on Making (on board the Floating Cinema)
15.30 Juicing Demo with The Projuicer, Alex Noble
16.00 EMBX, Joe Stillion and Matthew Jones - Inside computers
16.20 Frank Marr from the Bamboo Bicycle Club leads a presentation Q&A about their open source bamboo bike making workshops
16.40 Make-your-own Cricket Balls with Thomas Benjamin
17.00 Ends

Films on Making 

Glas, Bert Haanstra, 1958, 11 min 
Glas is a 1958 Dutch short documentary film by Bert Haanstra about the glass industry in the Netherlands. It won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Short Subject. Haanstra's camera follows the subtle process of glass-making, from the handmade crystal glass to the automated bottle making machines.

The Makers of Things, Anne Hollowday, 2013 
'The Makers of Things documents the work and workshops of the Society for Model and Experimental Engineers, a sprawling organisation with members all over the world.'Through these 4 little portraits, from the Model Engineer to The Woodworker, the films invite us to discover those 'makers of things' and their passion for creating. 
1. The Society 3'15 
2. The Problem Solver 3'58 
3. The Model Engineer 3'25 
4. The Woodworker 4'11

The Making of the Floating Cinema, O Production, 2013 11 mins

Planning for Protest - Lisbon Architecture Triennial.

If you happen to be in Lisbon over the coming weeks check out our contribution to PLANNING FOR PROTEST, which is a collaboration with Isaac Marrero-Guillamón.

You can download our full contribution here.


Planning for Protest is a publication, exhibition and associated project of the 2013 Lisbon Architecture Triennale.

Organized by Ben Allen, James Bae, Ricardo Gomes, Shannon Harvey and Adam Michaels, the project will explore both the social and architectural definitions of protest in light of the current global financial crisis. Architectural offices witnessing these events first-hand will provide case studies and project proposals for contested spaces within their own cities.

Participants include: Antonas Office (Athens), Studio Miessen (Berlin), studioBasar (Bucharest), Cluster (Cairo), Culturstruction (Dublin), Superpool (Istanbul), Ateliermob (Lisbon), public works with Isaac Marrero-Guillamón (London), Ecosistema Urbano (Madrid), Srdjan Jovanović Weiss / NAO (New York), PioveneFabi with 2A+P/A (Rome), Vapor 324 (São Paulo).

.pdf document 8.30 MB


public works will be charing a talk at 'The Lake' in Southwark by EXYZT on temporary use
Can temporary uses change the way we plan our cities?
19th September 2013 from 6.30 onwards

Over the last ten years, the "pop-up" has become a popular and legitimate model for occupying unused spaces in London – pop-up restaurants and bars, galleries, public spaces – opportunities on the one-hand for squeezing commercial value out of underused properties or land, but also to bring activity and a sense of pride to undervalued places.

Centre for Cities carried out research in December 2012 in a report called Size Matters, looking at the importance of the city core for small businesses and what policies should be developed to specifically support small enterprises.

The Bankside Neighbourhood Forum is currently looking at how to accommodate a more flexible and adaptable approach to built spaces in the emerging Bankside Neighbourhood Plan. Will temporary uses provide a solution and what principles could be adopted by the Plan?

The roots of pop-up activities will provide the context for this debate. This session will discuss the future of temporary uses, their relevance in planning policy and their role in supporting the introduction of small, creative enterprises in Central London.
Chair: Andreas Lang (public works)
Panellists include: Sara Muzio (EXYZT) and Finn Williams (Common Office)


The project questions whether a common needs to be legally established or can the way its public (commoners) use it as part of a collective resource for collective gain become a new way we create commons.

The proposal ' The DIY Common' will use the unlisted structure of an abandoned seating shelter opposite a listed bandstand in Cheetham park, Manchester for a temporary café. The park is used as a resource for what the cafe produces and serves. Attached to the café will be a Dye Garden making references to Cheetham Hill and Manchester’s once strong identity around textiles and dyeing of textiles, and its social structures. The common becomes a resource for sharing and creative production. 

Later this year we will harvest the dead and fallen branches in the park to fire a stove for the café and also boiling water for the natural dyes.  The existing crab apple tree in the park will allow us to make edible products such as pies, jams, cakes, crumble, juice etc.

The project aims to bring together a strong community to become its 'commoners', and manage, use and develop the park as a common resource locally. As part of finding this community public works is hosting series of events in Cheetham hill, to establish different interest groups.

The first event on Saturday 13th July was screening of the film 'The Lost Requiem' by Iranian film maker Khosrow Sinai which subsequently launched the project in collaboration with Anna a local polish resident.

The project is commissioned by Buddleia.


Congratulations to AAA and the City of Colombes for launching R-urban in Colombes with a bang. AgroCité and RecycLab are now open.


This is a Call for young teams of architects, designers, artists, students or professionals of ecological building, who are interested in recycling and eco-design and who are keen to develop full scale prototypes within the framework of a civic project in a suburban town near Paris. They should be passionate makers and possibly also fans of… AAA’s work.

Please have a look into this Call for Residency (bellow), which is the first in a series that we initiate within the R-Urban project currently developed in Colombes(

Please do not hesitate to contact us for more information. We are really excited about possible collaborations and look forward to receiving your expression of interest!

Recyclab is part of the R-urban network of projects.

PS. Please feel free to circulate the information within your networks

.pdf document 721.95 kB


The Open Charter Agency would like to invite you to our second public discussion forum on Tuesday 16 April at 6:30pm.

The discussion will address different forms of knowledge exchange and modes of learning as an essential part of experimental and engaged spatial practice, and the potential for alternative forms of education as a driver of change within the architecture and design professions.

16 April, 6:30pm
The White Building, Unit 7, Queens Yard, White Post Lane, London E9 5EN


Shop as resource and value created through recycling trash to treasures

This upcycling project by public works demonstrates how, with very little material resource, one can upcycle low value objects into higher value products.

The project was conceived and delivered by public works, in collaboration with ROOFLESS art practice and clothing collection, as part of SHOPPORTUNITY – a project to improve shop frontages on Wood Street, Walthamstow, E17. New Life Charity Shop at 135 Wood Street hosted the project, providing 70% of the raw materials used to create a shop window display system, and an upcycled clothing collection called ‘A New Life’. public works also worked with staff and students from the Fashion Department, HND course at Waltham Forest College to breath new life into an odd assortment of clothing donated to the shop. Together they have produced a range of fabulous high fashion items all with specific stories behind them.

New Life Charity Shop is an incredible place of hidden treasures. A bespoke window display unit aims to highlight these treasures within old picture frames found in the shop. The display unit was designed and built by public works and accommodated a workbench for a short period, to enable the design team to work in the shop window upcycling clothing and shoes.

The upcycled clothing collection – ‘A New Life’ will be unveiled, alongside the students’ works, at a fashion show on Saturday 23rd March 2013 at 12 noon in Wood Street Plaza, E17. The designers will be present to describe the project and the stories behind each item of clothing, and share upcycling tips. Following the fashion show items can be purchased from New Life Charity shop itself. The proceeds of the sales will go to New Life Charity supporting children's education and welfare in third world countries.

Saturday 23rd March 2013

12 noon – 1.30 p.m

Wood Street Plaza, E17