Hundreds of people check out designs for facelift at BRI
MORE than 400 people visited an exhibition of designs put forward by internationally acclaimed artists and were able to vote on which design they think should overhaul the front of the Bristol Royal Infirmary.
Designs for the transformation of the Bristol Royal Infirmary have come from as far afield as New York, Stockholm and Madrid.
They range from the use of coloured panels, the creation of large window boxes, glass panes and the addition of fins to create the impression of rippling water.
University Hospitals Bristol NHS Foundation Trust has decided to overhaul the facade of the Upper Maudlin Street building as part of its £80 million redevelopment.
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It is using £2.2 million from the BRI redevelopment budget to transform the front of the Queen's Building and hopes the money will cover the extra design elements.
A new ward block is being built behind the hospital and a helipad and new entrance added.
Yesterday members of the public attended an exhibition of the designs at UHBristol's Education and Research Centre.
James Higgins, 40, from Brislington, who works in IT, said: "I think it is great they are doing something with a building that has been an eyesore for years.
"I like the design by Tham and Videgard. I think it is a building that people would want to stop and look at rather than scurry away."
Alice Redfearn, 27, of Westbury Park said: "I like the design by Nieto Sobejano because I think it looks fresh and clean and I like the design by Luke Jerram because he is a local and he has taken the colours of the children's hospital into account."
Retired architect John Young, of Redland, said: "I am delighted that somebody is doing something about it – whatever they choose it would be an improvement.
"It's also good that we have been presented with six very different and radical proposals to choose from."
Emma Podnieks, 32, a clinical scientist from Horfield, said: "Something needs to be done so it is brought up to date and fits in more with its surroundings.
"I like the design by Luke Jerram because it's a bit of fun and I like the one by SO-IL but I worry that it is a bit impractical. I think the Tham and Videgard design would be a great addition to the road."
Kev Dines, 31, from Redland who works in IT, said: "Most seem to be making the building more energy efficient which is absolutely a good thing. It's nice the ideas have been opened to the public."
Part-time mature student Rita Bourn, of Westbury Park, said: "It's horrific at the moment so I wanted to come and down and make an effort.
"I like the design by Nieto Sobejano and the one by Luke Jerram."
Views from the public will be used to draw up a final shortlist of no more than three designs, which will then be expanded upon to establish cost and other factors before a final decision is made by the UHBristol board in July.