Unit 6

About the show 

This year, Unit 6’s Architecture Exchange involved sites in Mile End/Bromley by Bow (London); Taj Ganj, a historic slum adjacent to the Taj Mahal, (India); and Freetown, (Sierra Leone).

Using the site as the primary resource, Unit 6 adopted a strategy of architectural tuning. We avoided demolition, removal and replacement; seeking rather to add, transform and re-use. Our interventions are not aimed at simulating what already exists but rather at enabling inhabitants to exploit its latent potential. In deciding what to erase and what to reveal we were aware of our chosen site’s engagement with the changing city metabolism. Our relationship to context is performative rather than formal. This strategy allows us to be generous with the craftspeople, materials, spatial resources and city infrastructure we employ.

(Ex)change is a very ancient activity which is as much cultural as economic (from futures, corn and rice to salt and leftovers). It has been associated with a broad range of buildings and places (from pre-Christian basilicas, Victorian corn exchanges and cloth halls, Islamic caravanserais to contemporary High Streets, farmers markets and urban makeries). But (ex)change also includes most shared common ground activities including simple conversations over the neighbours fence, sharing confidences over a cup of coffee in a High Street cafe, having a suit tailor made to suit your special predelictions and attending a resident’s meeting in a block of flats. Lifting the horizon somewhat, (ex)change can harness the world wide networks lurking within the cosmopolitan residents of the 3 cities which were studied by different students in Unit 6 this year.

Alexandra McClean - Freetown National Museum

Architecture Exchange

Exhibition details

Location Central House 3rd Floor
Course Professional Diploma in Architecture RIBA Part 2
Unit Unit 6

Students' work

 Alexandra McClean
Unit 6 Image by Alexandra McClean

Freetown National Museum 

 Andrew Wilkinson
Andrew Wilkinson
Brick Jali Wall Elevation Unit 6 RIBA 2

Brick Jali Wall Elevation 

 Calum Green
Calum Green Concept model Unit 6 RIBA 2

Concept model - Tower Block refurbishment  

 Calum Green
Calum Green
Elevation of Tower Podium and Hall Unit 6 RIBA 2

Elevation of Tower, Podium and Hall 

 Eleanor Crosbie
Eleanor Crosbie
Water Tower and Chowk Unit 6 RIBA 2

Water Tower and Chowk 

 Etsuko McGee
Etsuko McGee
Priti’s World Unit 6 RIBA 2

Priti’s World - A caged bird 

 Farhad Malek Rear
Farhad Malek
Rear Elevation of Link Building Unit 6 RIBA 2

Elevation of Link Building 

 Farhad Malek
Farhad Malek
Section through Link Building Unit 6 RIBA 2

Section through Link Building 

 Joanna Barnes
Joanna Barnes
Civic and Commercial Exchange on a hill in the slum Unit 6 RIBA 2

Civic and Commercial Exchange 

 Jonathan Crosthwaite
Jonathan Crosthwaite Distribution Centre

Distribution Centre - Taj Ganj, Agra. 

 Jonathan Crosthwaite - Street Scene
Jonathan Crosthwaite Street Scene

Warehouse, podium and covered market 

 Joe Davis - Public Room Construction Site
Joe Davis Public Room Construction Site

Mahogany on reconditioned old concrete 

 Joe Davis - The crumbling campus
Joe Davis The crumbling campus

Concrete campus of the University of Sierra Leone 

 James Sirett
James Sirett
Graveyard Elevation Unit 6 RIBA 2

Graveyard Elevation 

 James Sirett - 'Secret Garden'
James Sirett Secret Garden

Access and ownership to the backlands of Taj Ganj 

 Nick Chantarasak - Caravanserai
Nick Chantarasak Caravanserai

Sectional perspective 

 Nick Chantarasak
Nick Chantarasak
A tomb polemic

A tomb polemic 

 Oluwatobi Sofela
Oluwatobi Sofela
Projecton of Silvology Centre

Projecton of Silvology Centre 

 Robert Johnson
Robert Johnson
Up and down in Arnold Road

Up and down in Arnold Road 

 Robert Johnson
Robert Johnson
Compiling an infrastructural landscape Unit 6 RIBA 2

Compiling an infrastructural landscape 

4th Year

Joanna Barnes
Domenic Bolt
Lauren Campany
Eleanor Crosbie
Jonathan Crosthwaite
Calum Green
Robert Johnson
Reynold Li
Philip Pawlett Jackson
Oluwatobi Sofela
Andrew Wilkinson

5th Year

Nicolas Chantarasak
Joesph Davis
Alexandra McClean
Etsuko McGee
Gosia Ostrowska
James Sirett

MA Architecture

Wu-Han Chou

Bo Tang
Robert Barnes
Matthew Barac
Matt Thomley
NGO CURE India
Shamoon Patwari
Rachel O'Grady
Julia King
Sunand Prasad
NGO CESO Sierra Leone
Jonathan Weaver
Philip Turner
Victoria Timberlake
+Cass Staff