2000: Town Centre Pedestrianization, Bournemouth

The Square in Bournemouth is a significant civic open space and provides a meeting place for residents and tourists alike. Seating areas and an informal gathering place for street entertainers were created off the main desire line and a new building, designed by Trinity Architects, houses a camera obscura and café with outdoor seating area. Flowing beneath The Square is the Bourne stream, which provided the inspiration for the mosaic designed by Maggie Howarth of Cobblestone Design of Lancaster. The tail of the mosaic rises out of The Square, and flows to the sea, and the theme includes mermaids, fishes and Neptune. The project started in 1997 with the replacement of the culvert. Hard and soft landscaping following in the autumn of 1998, and construction of the building was carried out in 1999. The Mayor of Bournemouth opened the scheme in February 2000. Research into various natural stones resulted in the choice of French limestone. This suits the cosmopolitan seaside location, is light, bright, very strong, and of low permeability, making it less absorbent and easier to clean than other stones. Being so hard, it was used as a thinner slab, making for a cost-effective solution. Colour and texture accents were created by the use of red limestone and granite setts. Brockleys’ brick was chosen as a secondary material due to its warm natural colour and unusual dimensions. Street furniture was chosen for simplicity and elegance of design. Edwardian style seats from an earlier scheme were re-installed.

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