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Trivia on John Dalton Street

Interview with the Architect Christopher Hosty

 

Julie Twist: Can you pinpoint the origin of your interest in architecture?

CH: I know that it happened during my Design & Technology A-level course. I knew that my strength lay in design, and that the process of designing was exciting to me, I still get the buzz from imagining what a place or space could be; however, I wasn’t sure at that time which discipline would suit me best. I conducted some research into architecture and architectural education and was drawn by the variety and depth of research and practice available, our profession encompasses all elements of design, invention, science, technology, economics as well as social responsibility.

Julie Twist: How has your background shaped the work you do now?

CH: Coming from a family who have worked in construction for three generations, the practical side of design always interested me, the technical course available at the Liverpool School of Art suited my interest – from which I graduated with a commendation in 2010. Throughout study I worked for the small firm JMP Architects on a variety of commercial, residential and leisure projects of varying scale, gaining critical grounding in construction detail and production information. The blend of study and in-practice experience allowed me to run projects early in my career – after university I spent three years at Lewandowski Architects in Eton, a high-end residential and education specialist; after which, I moved to Manchester and worked at JM architects and AHR (formerly Aedas) on larger scale commercial and education projects.
I purposefully set out to gain a breadth of knowledge across various sectors early in my career and feel this has laid a strong technical yet creative foundation on which Elevate was founded in 2015. We produce inventive, stylish yet practical evidence-based responses to our clients’ brief, which are always focussed towards the end user.

Julie Twist: What do you feel is your practice’s strongest skill?

CH: The ability to respond to a variety of projects with the same level of understanding – which I think comes from our ability to research and question the project brief, fully understanding the client’s requirements, the needs of the end user as well as the wider social and environmental impact.

Julie Twist: Can you tell us what you’re working on at the moment?

CH: A new commission for the conversion of a 17th century stone barn in Lancashire has provided an opportunity to experiment with new materials and finishes in response to an ambitious brief from a private client. For CERT property, we recently submitted a planning application for the creative reuse of a mid-century office building, creating 66 residential apartments in Old Trafford. Breathing new life into the concrete and tile existing building as well as extending the building by two storeys, this is an exciting, challenging project which will have a very positive effect on its location. As with John Dalton Street, the client’s commitment to creating an honest response to the existing architecture has been instrumental in allowing us to craft high quality, unique living space.

CH: The ability to respond to a variety of projects with the same level of understanding – which I think comes from our ability to research and question the project brief, fully understanding the client’s requirements, the needs of the end user as well as the wider social and environmental impact.

Buildings History!

40-42 John Dalton Street has heritage interest and dates from the late 19th Century. The building lies within the Albert Square Conservation Area which was designated in Manchester City Centre in April 1972.

The Conservation Area includes buildings on the south side of John Dalton Street including 40-42 John Dalton Street, the east part of the street, closest to Albert Square is characterised by narrow fronted properties set at back of pavement. The buildings are typically of 3-4 storeys in height with some variation providing interest to the street-scene. There is an interesting roofscape with buildings exhibiting decorative cornices, tall chimneys and a variety of roof forms. It is generally not possible to see the roof of buildings from street level however due to their pitch and parapet walls and the relatively tight urban grain. The buildings are generally constructed of traditional materials including brick, stone and slate with timber windows. Whilst the upper floors of buildings have undergone a low level of alteration, the ground floor have been subject to greater change with contemporary shopfronts, prioritising expansive glazing, installed

40-42 John Dalton Street is located in the heart of Manchester City Centre less than 50m from Albert Square and Manchester Town Hall. The central location means that there are a broad range of shops, services, amenities and employment opportunities within the immediate vicinity of the site. In terms of access by public transport, the site is located within close proximity to a high number of bus stops including those on John Dalton Street itself; Metrolink stops located at St Peter’s Square, Market Street and Exchange Square; and, is within walking distance of Deansgate, Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly, and Salford Central Railway Stations. The site is also a short distance from bus stops on Deansgate which are serviced by the free Metroshuttle (routes 1 and 3), and provide regular services across the City Centre including to the main railway stations.

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