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York Minster Piazza

Client: The Dean & Chapter of York Minster
Architect: Andrew Arrol
Contractor: William Anelay

Construction of new steps and ramp to the South Door of the Minster integrated with a wholesale reworking of the streetscape.

The South side of the minster had long been a problem with a set of steps crammed between the roadway and the South Front and a crummy temporary ramp for wheel chair users.

This wholesale reworking of the entire area reduces the roadway to a series of delicate alterations in the surface treatment – in place of the clumsy kerbs, tarmac and double yellow lines.   This required a complex collaboration between the city traffic authorities, planners and conservationists.

The steps and ramp are replaced in a permanent form that is at the same time simple, practical and extremely elegant – using the ancient geometry of the vesica piscis to make a carefully managed formal gesture in an irregularly-shaped space.

The detailing is simple and robust.  The entire project greatly enhances this side of the Minster.   We were delighted to learn that a similar treatment is to be further extended round the South and West sides of the Minster.

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