Pop centre draws up shortlist

Twenty interiors consultancies are keen to design exhibitions for Sheffield’s 10m National Centre for Popular Music, which published a shortlist of contenders for the design of its new building last week.

The Royal Institute of British Architects confirms that the shortlist of six architects comprises three London practices – Apicella Associates, Branson Coates Architects and David Chipperfield Architects, two Manchester practices – Ellis Williams Architects and Mills Beaumont Leavey Channon, and Sheffield’s Studio Pop 5. The final selection will be in early November.

Design consultancies 20/20, Richard Fowler Associates, Imagination, Red Jacket, Land Design, Met Studio and US group the Totally Fun Company are among the consultancies which have approached the centre for interiors work.

“There are loads more graphic designers and lighting specialists on our list,” adds centre development director Tim Strickland, who hopes to make a shortlist by the end of October. He is unable to comment about the type of pitch at present.

“We might look for one masterplanner and several exhibitions people, or we might do the masterplanning in-house,” explains Strickland.

“We want designers who can tell the story of popular music and link it with the audience. Excellent creative use of technology is a priority over graphics at the moment,” he adds.

The centre is scheduled to open in 1997.

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