Abby Aldridge

Abby Aldridge

2nd Year Portfolio

Sheffield School of Architecture





The first project that I undertook of my second year was that of designing a chicken hatchery that had sufficient space to house up to 40 chickens. The set requirements for the hatchery were to provide, an indoor incubation room, indoor pen room, indoor wash down facilities, multi functional space (main function as an educational space), staff area with an office and facilities and sufficient outdoor space for chickens to roam when they’ve reached the required age to be allowed outside. The site was Millhouses Park, Abbeydale Road South. On a first visit to the park during the week there was very little activity with any activity taking place situated around the cafe and the boating lake. However, on a return visit at a weekend it was like returning to a different place, there were many families that were engaging in activities throughout the park together. Due to these considerations I wished to design a Hatchery that during the week would serve as an educational facility and that then at the weekend would be able to open up more to the public and families that are in the park.

During my design process, I made the decision that the journey through my building would serve as a journey through the stages of a growing chick. One would enter under an extended canopy in a multi functional space, in this space is where classes would take place along with information boards displaying the processes that can be found in the hatchery. Adjacent to this space on one side is the staff area and on the other side begins the journey through the chicken’s life, starting with the incubation room. The threshold of the incubation room is stepped back from the main building so as to draw the passer by in to come and peer through the windows with the chance of being able to catch a glimpse of a chick hatching. I situated my building right alongside the main pathway through the park so as to attract the attention of the passer by and so that it will not be missed by families on their visit to the park.


Darnall Library

The second project was that of designing a library in Darnall. When visiting Darnall and speaking to local shop owners and workers it became very apparent that there isn’t much that stays consistent, there are large groups of immigrants in the area from differing ethnicities and because of this gang culture is rife. Locals that have lived in the area for years feel that it is no longer a safe environment to be in, especially after dark. They also expressed feelings that the area is ‘dead’ and will never be able to be rejuvenated to its former glory.

Taking this into account I wanted to design a library that would become the permanence in the transience of Darnall, to make long-time residents feel that from now onward there will be something that always remains the same and that isn’t rocked by the transience of the area. On the ground floor there will be a cafe area, cosy sunken seating and a ‘secret’ garden area to in still feelings of tranquil and peace into those who use the library. The sunken seating is made from cork so that it is a soft and comfortable environment that is not only enjoyable to relax in but that also allows children to happily play. On the first floor is the main library floor, with the majority of the books and alcove working areas. These personal alcove working areas allow one to work in peace and quiet and also escaping from their surroundings. There are other working areas that look out over the street and that look out over the garden area. On the second floor is where the stacks will be housed.


 Housing, Heeley

For the final project of the year, working with our own manifesto we were required to design a housing development that would be able to accommodate more than one domestic group. There was also the requirement for a community facility to be present in the development. My manifesto stemmed from the idea that as an individual or as a family, what one requires is constantly developing and expanding. Their house needs to be able to do that with them or else it becomes insufficient. In my scheme there are 8 houses of 4 designs.

My site is situated opposite SUM studios and behind the church. It is a long narrow site and one of the first things that became apparent to me about the site was the formation of boundaries that surround it. The three closed boundaries that face the Heeley Institute, the back of the school and the back of the church and then the more open boundary that faces directly onto SUM studios. Due to these there were 4 main approaches that I took to the site, these being; a strong facade to respond to the facade of SUM studios, shared surface road that feels inviting and that still allows some access to the school, shared gardens across the back of the site, helping to bring the community together and also creating a boundary between the site and the churchyard and finally placing the community facility between the school and the houses so that noise coming from the school can be buffered slightly. The community facility that I included into my scheme is an After School Care that can be used not only by the families in the scheme but also from the wider community of Heeley.


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