London South Bank University enterprise centre to receive public realm design awardLSBU's Clarence Centre for Enterprise and Innovation is to receive a Civic Trust Award recognising its contribution to the built environment and local community
Having lain derelict for decades, the Grade II-listed Georgian buildings of St George's Circus in Southwark were reopened in September as the Clarence Centre, a home for the local business community. It aims to create an entrepreneurial melting pot where businesses, start-up and established, can benefit from networking and cross-pollination of ideas.
Designed by architects Rivington Street Studio, the terraces combine both formal office and retail with public space and informal working areas. The building is a significant contribution to the regeneration of the Elephant and Castle and will now receive a Civic Trust Award, Commendation or Community Recognition at a ceremony in March.
Commenting on the centre's opening last year, LSBU Pro Vice-Chancellor (External) Beverley Jullien said: "This is a significant milestone in London South Bank University's vision to become 'London's enterprising university'.
"The Clarence Centre will reinforce the university's commitment to business start-ups and knowledge transfer, creating invaluable space and resources for local businesses. It will foster the entrepreneurial ambitions of students and staff, supporting them to make even closer connections with business and industry."
Among the first to move into the new centre were the university's own student entrepreneurs and enterprise team, and the centre gives the university the opportunity to expand its student and graduate business incubation programmes.
The university is also working with Capital Enterprise, the membership organisation for providers of business advice, to develop an approach to 'crowd-sourcing' an extensive programme of events. The idea is to promote engagement between the university and its students, business tenants, and the wider community.
The Civic Trust Awards were established in 1959 to recognise the very best in architecture, design, planning, landscape and public art.