Dezeen Magazine

Tribeca by Alison Brooks Architects

Alison Brooks Architects have designed three buildings for the Tribeca development on Great George Street in Liverpool, UK.


The project, for developer Urban Splash, will incorporate 93 apartments, with commercial space on the ground floor. The new buildings will cluster around an existing bridal shop, housed in a gothic-style building on the site.


The buildings are due for completion in 2016.


More Dezeen stories about Alison Brooks Architects:

Salt house
Herringbone houses


The following information is from the architects:


Tribeca: Alison Brooks Architects' Scheme at Great George Street in Liverpool for Developer Urban Splash.

Alison Brooks Architects have designed three buildings for the 'Tribeca' development in Liverpool, which will act as a 'beacon' at the prominent corner of Great George Street and St James Street. The buildings will be a combination of 93 apartments and colonnaded commercial space at street level.


Property Developer Urban Splash invited four architects to work with them on the project: Liverpool’s shedkm, London-based Alison Brooks Architects, Riches Hawley Mikhail, and Austrian practice querkraft.


Urban Splash revealed earlier this year that its development will be called Tribeca. It will be the largest residential scheme in the city to date with over 700 new homes being created. The site forms three distinct triangles, so Urban Splash put the phrase together 'Triangles Beneath Cathedral' to create Tri-be-ca, Tribeca. It echoes its famous New York counterpart which was named because the area was made up of a series of triangular sites which sat beneath Canal Street.

ABA's scheme has been conceived as a contemporary addition to the sandstone architecture of Liverpool, a 21st century gothic. The team were inspired by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's nearby Anglican Cathedral, consecrated in 1924, and the city's monumental stone civic buildings. Their architecture expresses solidity and permanence qualities which ABA feel are essential for new urban neighbourhoods.

The faceted forms of ABA's three buildings and their elongated fenestration is intended to relate to both the Gothic articulation of the Wedding Shop on the site, as well as the dramatic verticality of the nearby Cathedral. The stone-clad facades stretch up toward the sky, gradually becoming lighter and more glazed as they increase in height. Within the windows are vertical strips of coloured glass reminiscent of the beautiful stained glass windows that enliven the sandstone interior of St George's.

ABA's approach counters the conventional response to tall building design. These are usually built of lightweight glazed systems, giving them a fragile, commercial quality.

As Alison Brooks comments, “We wanted to re-interpret the Neo-Gothic Victorian architecture in this area of Liverpool and take it a step further, to design tall buildings that express a dynamic, vertical rhythm with their fenestration and their geometry, but are built with a heavy, traditional material like stone.”

ABA were very interested in creating a new urban neighbourhood with the scale, density and architectural quality that put it on a par with the great boulevards of continental cities. The aim is to extend the centre of the city towards the south so that the area becomes a gateway into Liverpool, and a destination in itself.

Tribeca will take approximately 8 years to build and work will start on the site in spring 2008.

Recipient of a 2008 Housing Design Project Award

Architect: Alison Brooks Architects Ltd
Client: Urban Splash, Liverpool Dept.
Masterplan: Shed KM Architects, Liverpool
Administration: Gerrard ODonnell Ltd, Widnes
Structural Engineer: Joule Consulting Engineers, Manchester
Mechanical and Electrical Consultant: Progressive Services Design Ltd, Wirrel
Quantity Surveyor/Project Management: Gerrard O'Donnell