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Vacant shop in Harrow used as exhibition space


February 14, 2017

An installation has been used to transform a vacant retail outlet near a Harrow tube station.

The pop-up exhibition was created by RIBA Chartered Practice, Milligan Knight. The public were obliged to look through little holes in a blocked out window to get a glimpse of the architectural process. Milligan Knight Architects (MKA) could use branded office stationery from Ruislip Manor for promotional purposes.

Director at MKA, Simon Knight, told the Harrow Times:

“We designed and installed the exhibition to try and be engaging with the public by creating these peepholes that cause intrigue and have a sense of humour about them.”

People were able to go inside the shop and view how the architectural process works. They could think about how a project evolves from an initial briefing through design and planning to construction. The road to a completed building was illustrated by models, photographs and drawings of various initiatives.

The initiative was managed by Meanwhile Space. This organisation is behind a policy called Start Here. The local authority has engaged with Meanwhile Space to make this approach possible.

A community interest firm, Meanwhile Space takes on commercial property which is not currently in use. It then permits groups to make use of the space for an allotted time without incurring a charge. Finally, the property can be rented or sold after the temporary occupation has ended.