Location: Chester, UK
Date: 2012 -2018
Client: Cheshire West and Chester Council
Status: Detailed design
Size: 47.000 sqm GEA
Credits: ACME Team (Luka Anic, Michel Bosauder, Mark Broom, Carlo Caltabiano, Monica Capitanio, Nicholas Channon, Ifigeneia Dilaveraki, Stephen Harker, Catherine Hennessy, Lizy Huyghe, Jon Iriondo Goena, Norbert Jundt, Petros Kailis, Constantine Lemos, Elli Liverakou, Iria de la Pena, Eduardo López Solórzano, Friedrich Ludewig, Edoardo Milli, Paolo Moretto, Charles Pigott, Maria Perez Vera, Jan Saggau, Thomas Soo, Penny Sperbund, Azizah Sulor, Antonio Torres Tebar, Laura Patrizi, HexuanYu, Adriana Zurera)
An historic capital of Roman Britain, Chester developed into a lively centre of commerce until the harbour silted up and ship traffic moved downstream to Liverpool. Chester today is famous for its old buildings and its historic Rows — recessed walkways set above street level which line the main routes through the city.  Since the 1970s, Chester has seen an ever increasing growth of competition from Liverpool and out-of-town competitors, all offering convenient free parking and ease of access, resulting in the slow decline of Chester’s Town Centre. Northgate will rejuvenate Chester’s ailing city-centre, form new street connections, create public spaces and bring to life a new cultural and leisure quarter.
Six buildings have been designed by ACME within the master plan: Chester market, cinema, department store, hotel and two mixed-use blocks incorporating retail, residential and office uses.
The architectural expression of each builds on Chester’s unique and layered architectural context. Materiality, form and pattern are reinterpreted in a variety of ways in order to continue the richness and variety that make the local urban experience so rewarding for visitors and citizens alike.