Plantings and water display to form basis of revamp for Gloucester square

Closely planted trees will form curtains of vegetation around a water feature as part of the winning design for a major new public space in Gloucester.

Churchman Landscape Architects with Niall McLaughlin Architects have won an international competition to redesign the town's King's Square.

The multi-stage competition was organised by the Royal Institute of British Architects for Gloucester Heritage Urban Regeneration Company (GHURC).

The scheme is based on the idea of a "square within a square" and consists of a grid of slate-paved platforms that can be flooded to provide an event space that celebrates Gloucester's relationship with the River Severn.

The water displays are surrounded by closely planted trees with their branches trained together to form a living horizontal level.

It is hoped local waterside species will be used, but Churchman director Chris Churchman said a final species list had not yet been decided on. "The judges liked the scheme as it had a very simple but compelling philosophy that relates to the history of Gloucester and the Severn," Churchman added.

The judging panel included CABE design review panel chairman Les Sparks, representatives from GHURC and funding partner English Partnerships.

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