Group 09

The Circus House was founded in 2009 and aims to encourage people to join community activities, and express themselves artistically through acrobatic methods. We are going to work with The Circus House and Manchester City Council to design a new building in one empty area nearby the existing Crossley house youth centre. The Circus House expects the building to provide spaces for circus training, performances and social activities. For the architecture design, as a circus house, we hope the space would be full of fun and energic.

Junjie S / Siyu X

MEET OUR TEAM ! - Dreamhouse for Circus -

We are a team of 6 MArch students from 5th year working with The Circus House.

Mangting Lyu (USE)
Siyu Xie (CPU&AI)
Menghan Chen (CPU&AI)
Qinyi Tang (&rchitecture)
Jiao Xie (CPU&AI)
Junjie Su (CPU&AI)
Posted 7 Mar 2020 20:40
First Meeting

The Circus House is an inspiring organisation of dedicated and caring individuals who put on a great show and brighten the streets and stages of Manchester and beyond. During these years, they had helped many people including women and children in Manchester to communicate through the acrobatic training, which achieved a very good outcome. However, due to the approaching expires of house contrast, they are eager to have a new house design. Sian, one of the directors of The Circus House, and her team are hoping us to design a new dream house for them so that the Circus House is able to make contributions to communities in the future.
Posted 14 Mar 2020 11:17
Second Meeting

In the second meeting, we glad to have Sian again. In the meeting, we talked about the requirements and the architectural style that they are looking for. What is more, we have discussed about the outcomes of our project also, and we both agree to have a physical model and some kinds of media like videos to present our design. In the end, Sian also taught us some essential acrobatic skills, and it was exciting, and we believed that the BA students would enjoy that too.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:26
What you can achieve here

During the project, we will not only focus on the workflow of an architectural project but also encourage students to explore their ideas and find out their place in the project. The 5th year students will teach the necessary software at first, but after that, we will unite together and design the new Circus House together.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:27
Acrobatics Trainning

During the whole project, we would like to take students to The Circus House to have some acrobatic training. Sian, one of the directors of The Circus House would like to give us some basic training like silk aerial, juggler and flower stick. We all consider it is an excellent opportunity to not only experience the training but also feel the scale for the acrobatic activities.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:28
Guest Talk

Due to the limited budget of the project, we are planning to explore low-cost housing, and we are delighted to have Enrique to be our guest. Enrique, a senior project architect in Urban Planning Practice, has many experiences of the practical projects and would like to give us a talk about the low-cost housing and tutorials about The Circus House Project.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:28
Site Analysis

The site is located at the Manchester M11 2HB. It takes about 11 minutes to drive from the city centre and 8 minutes from The Circus House. The site is about 1,800 square metres and now is used for car parking. In the south, there is an expressway, and in the north, there is a small road for loading. In the west of the site, there is a building called Crossly House which is used for the youth centre.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:29
Crossley House Analysis

Openshaw Lad's Club was founded in November 1888 by William John Crossley. It was previously known as the Gorton and Openshaw Working Lad's Club and the Crossley Lad's Club. The Crossley family financed the club up to 1941, and they built the club premises, Crossley House to commemorate Sir William Crossley after his death in 1911. The building was opened in September 1913. In July 1941 the premises were handed over to the National Association of Boy's Clubs, and a management committee was formed to administer the club. For 21 years it was the home of the Boxing Club run by Bob Shannon. The former base for Ricky Hatton and Marco Antonio Barrera had been credited by police with helping to cut crime through its community work and regular kids sessions.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:30
Facades Analysis

The facades of the houses around the site are analysed. The surrounding houses are mainly brick walls, and there will also be some factory houses with metal facades. The indoor status images reflect the existing layout of the original circus house. From these pictures, we can learn some of the requirements of the circus house and the existing problems.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:33
Client Requirement

After the discussion about the requirement for the new circus house with the collaborators, they have come up with some needs of the space like a different size of studios, sitting area for parents etc. Moreover, due to the limited budget, they also encouraged us to think about low-cost housing and sustainable design.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:40
Social Value Analysis

The circus house will welcome beginners, professionals and everyone in between, so we will encourage everyone to get out of their house and try our best to make our project available and affordable to as many people as possible, such as housewives and disabled people. Getting involved in exciting acrobatics learning and experience, they can communicate or make friends with each other and release stress.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:41
Mental Health Analysis

Some evidence exists showing participation in the circus-arts may have positive effects on people's health and wellbeing. Findings from some study indicated circus aides in assisting children with ASD to improve their levels of physical activity and gross motor skills and improve social awareness and connectivity, beneficial for mental wellbeing.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:44
History of Circus Training

The origins of the modern circus came from Britain. From Shakespeare to the Beatles, circus culture is also one of Britain's most important cultural contributions to the global stage. Although Today's circus world is more diverse than ever, we should still go back and see what the circus looked like when it was born. The history can provide us with insight into cultures with which we might be less familiar, thereby increasing awareness and understanding of the circus.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:45
Acrobatics Analysis

Since we aim to design a new building for the circus house, it is essential to learn the scale of their acrobatic activities. We have selected some of the exciting activities and analysed scale and equipment that they need, which may be the guidelines for the following design process.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:46
Study Trip Two

We will gather at the Etihad stadium station on 30th April and generally talk about what features related to architecture needs to be a focus inside the stadiums and venues. For example, the scale of spaces for sports activities, the way for openings and materials they use to dealing with daylighting and the structure for large stadiums.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:47
Study Trip One

We will gather at the Burnage Sports club at 6th MAY and check the number of students and make sure nobody is missing. We will generally talk about what features related to architecture needs to be a focus inside the sports club, the space atmosphere, the use of daylighting and the way they arrange the audiences' views. Of course, we hope everyone could enjoy the show and the beauty of acrobatics.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:47
Precedent Research

Considering the requirements of The Circus House and also lack the experiences of circus design, at the early stage we have done some precedents researches about the project. Among the precedents, we will focus on a similar scale to our site and analysis the relationship between each function. What is more, we also study the dimension of the spaces which are used for different training in the Circus House.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:49
The Outcome of the Project

After the discussion with the collaborators, we have agreed to have four types of outcomes for the whole project. The sketch will be used on the early stage to have a quick design, while the portfolio will keep adding during the process. Finally, the physical model and media display will be our primary outcome on the exhibition and final presentation.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:49
Sessional Plan One

In the early period, the project will focus on helping students to have a basic understanding of the scale, activities, materials of the circus house through different site visits. After that, the initial proposal will be developed, and a lecture about low-cost housing will be given by our guest. Moving forward, we will have a presentation about our designs to our collaborator and guests, which finally lead to an integration of all proposals together.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:50
Sessional Plan Two

When it comes to the next stage, we will divide the students into two groups. One group is aiming for digital drawing and exhibition preparing, while the other group will focus on the physical model making. During this time, we also have a Burnage Sports Club visit which is suitable for a deep understanding of the circus.
Posted 23 Mar 2020 19:50
Thank You

Unfortunately, we are sad to announce that due to the outbreak of COVID-19, our project will no longer continue as planned.
Throughout Events 20 we have been overwhelmed by the generosity of support of our collaborators and guests. Given the circumstances and the involvement of a large group of students across MArch, BArch and external school participants working in collaboration, it wouldn’t be safe to run the project at this time.
The research and work we have compiled in developing the project, can hopefully still be used to develop a collaboration between the MSA and The Circus House in the future. We had the chance to visit the Circus House and to see the site up close. We would like to thank the Circus House, especially Sian who supported us throughout this process. We would also like to thank our guest Enrique for his support and time. We would like to apologise to the prospective students who will no longer benefit from the valuable skills and existing opportunity this project presented.
Thank you to our collaborators, and everyone involved in the project for helping us begin to create something special. Wishing you all well in this difficult time. Stay safe!
Posted 31 Mar 2020 12:55