The Centre for Music project, led by partners the Barbican, London Symphony Orchestra and Guildhall School of Music & Drama, has announced the competitive process, funded by the City of London Corporation, for the recruitment of an expert design team to develop a concept design for an inspiring and innovative new Centre for Music in the City of London.
The three partner organisations, which are leading on the development of a detailed business case for the new Centre backed by the City of London Corporation, are seeking applications from internationally-recognised experts from across the globe to develop plans for a state-of-the-art building of acoustic and visual excellence.
The partners are looking to appoint a design team comprised of creative and world-leading experts in their field that share the partners’ vision, that can engage with the multi-faceted nature of the brief, and who can work with them towards a concept design to ensure the most exciting and dynamic outcome for the project.
The procurement process, submitted as Contract Notices to the Official Journal of the European Union, will lead to the appointments of the following roles to develop a concept design for the new Centre, with the intention of continuing the contracts to project completion. The concept design will form part of the detailed business case to be submitted to the City of London Corporation in December 2018:
- Building Service Engineer
- Civil & Structural Engineer
- Theatre Consultant
The City of London Corporation has provided up to £2.5 million in funding to complete this detailed business case for the Centre for Music. The Centre would contain a world-class concert hall, education, training and digital spaces, excellent facilities for audiences and performers, and significant supporting commercial areas. It would be a place of welcome, participation, discovery and learning fit for the digital age.
At the heart of the City of London’s thriving arts venues and its emerging cultural hub, this landmark new building would be a visible signal of commitment to the future of music that enhances London’s position as a world leading centre for the cultural and creative industries.
The preferred site for the Centre for Music, which the City of London Corporation has agreed in principle to make available, is currently occupied by the Museum of London, and will become available when the Museum of London fulfils its ambition to move to a new site at West Smithfield. The current Museum of London building would be demolished with the site reimagined and redesigned to accommodate the new landmark Centre for Music.
The strategic location of the site would open up a new ‘cultural corridor’ bringing visitors up from Tate Modern, via the Millennium Bridge and St Paul’s into the emerging cultural hub developed by the City Corporation and its four core partners the Barbican, Guildhall School, London Symphony Orchestra and Museum of London. 1.5 million additional visitors a year are expected in the area from 2018 as Crossrail opens stations at Farringdon and Moorgate, and the North-South Thameslink line is also upgraded.
Dr Andrew Parmley, Lord Mayor of the City of London, said: “We support the ambitious plans for a Centre for Music at the heart of the City of London, one of the finest cultural hubs in the world. This vibrant area has supported creativity and innovation to flourish across every sector and helped secure London’s position as the pre-eminent financial centre. Visually striking, acoustically perfect and open to all, a new Centre for Music – facing St. Paul’s Cathedral, Millennium Bridge and Tate Modern – would be an important investment in the strength of the Square Mile and our neighbouring communities.”
Catherine McGuinness, Policy Chairman at the City of London Corporation, said: “This is an important step towards the transformation of this vibrant area around the Barbican Centre and Guildhall School of Music & Drama into a world-class cultural hub. Culture, open and available to everyone, attracts people to work in, live in, and visit the Square Mile. We want to keep this vision at the heart of the City experience.”
Sir Nicholas Kenyon, Managing Director, Barbican; Kathryn McDowell CBE, Managing Director, London Symphony Orchestra and Lynne Williams, Principal, Guildhall School of Music & Drama said: “Today’s announcement is the latest stage in the development of this potentially transformative cultural project. Our aim is to recruit the strongest possible team of outstanding architects and experts from across the globe to seize this once-in-a-generation opportunity to create a landmark new building that inspires current and future generations through the power and excitement of live music.”
The process for the recruitment of these roles will follow City of London Corporation Procurement Code and will comply with the Public Contracts Regulations 2015.
The first stage of the procurement process is for the recruitment of Architects. Interested companies are asked to submit their response to a Selection Questionnaire (SQ) outlining their relevant experience and approach to project delivery. This questionnaire, alongside a project brief, are available on the City of London Corporation procurement portal today following submission of the Contract Notice to the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) tender portal. The closing date as advertised in the OJEU notice for SQ submission is 1200h British Summer Time on 9 June 2017.
Once submitted, a panel will assess and score the SQ submissions before shortlisting up to six companies who will receive an Invitation To Tender (ITT). For the recruitment of the architect this ITT will request a detailed response to the design brief, the company’s approach to delivering the project, details of the team that would work on the project and a fee proposal. All Architect bids invited to tender will receive an honorarium of £10,000 for satisfactory completion of a Response to Brief to contribute to costs associated with the development of this tender response.
Shortlisted bids will then be assessed and scored based on their tender submission and, following a detailed interview process with the assessment panel, an appointment decision will be made.
The OJEU notices and the publication of the SQ for the Building Service Engineer and the Civil & Structural Engineer will be available within the next week.
For the Acoustician and Theatre Consultant roles, there will be no SQ process and an ITT will be available to any Acousticians and Theatre Consultants interested in bidding for the contract. These will also be made available shortly after the commencement of the Architect procurement.
The project partners welcome bids from both individual firms and collaborations in order to best meet the criteria.
The panel appointed to assess tender responses from architects are:
• Alex Beard CBE, Chief Executive, Royal Opera House
• Professor Ricky Burdett CBE, Professor of Urban Studies and Director, LSE Cities
• Eva Jiricna CBE RA, Founder, Eva Jiricna Architects
• Sir Nicholas Kenyon, Managing Director, Barbican (Panel Chair)
• Kathryn McDowell CBE, Managing Director, London Symphony Orchestra
• Deputy Alastair Moss, Member, City of London Corporation
• Lucy Musgrave, Director, Publica
• Sir Simon Rattle, Music Director Designate, London Symphony Orchestra
• Lynne Williams, Principal, Guildhall School of Music & Drama
The tender responses for the other design roles will be judged by tender assessment panels made up of experts in the relevant fields and key members of the Centre for Music Project team. The appointed Panel Chairs are:
• Karin Gartzke, Arts Management Consultant, (Theatre Consultant Panel)
• Rob Manning, Former President of Chartered Institution of Building Services Engineers (Building Services Engineer Panel)
• Kathryn McDowell, CBE, Managing Director, London Symphony Orchestra (Acoustician Panel)
• Graham Watts, OBE, CEO of the Construction Industry Council (Civil & Structural Engineer Panel)