Niall McLaughlin Architects to design Somerset House auditorium and public space

Niall McLaughlin Architects have been chosen to design a new, multi-purpose auditorium and public space for London's Somerset House arts centre.

Designed and built by Sir William Chambers during the mid-to-late 1770s, the current neoclassical building has a rich history and courtyards that are described as being among the most beautiful in Europe.

With the building already home to a creative community and a variety of different exhibition and events spaces, a competition was run by Colander Associates for the design of a new auditorium and public space.

A total of 69 entries were received, with eight subsequently shortlisted from Adjaye Associates, Barozzi/Veiga with DRDH, David Chipperfield Architects, Flores Prats with AOC Architects, Haworth Tompkins with Citizen’s Design Bureau, Snohetta with Orms, Studio Seilern and, of course, Niall McLaughlin Architects.

The jury commended the firm's strong sense of design direction, clarity of thought, commitment to sustainability and creative and collaborative approach.

Somerset House said: "The jury felt confident that in their hands, the team would deliver Somerset House’s vision of creating a world-class performance space to make and showcase new, cutting-edge multi-disciplinary work to new, younger and more diverse audiences."

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