Students’ Union – University of Plymouth, Devon

Innovative design studio, Upcircle, were chosen by the University of Plymouth to create a scheme for a rooftop social area. We at Broxap were delighted to help bring this fresh, exciting design to life.

The project began with the desire for improved use of space on the main campus of the University of Plymouth. With the student union acting as a gateway to the campus, it was decided that the pre-existing roof terrace should be brought up to date as a relaxed, social setting for students which would also be suitable for hosting events such as the popular campus market.

The team at Upcircle put together a design for this new area in which bright, funky planters would be arranged between ‘pocket hubs’ across the roof. These hubs would be denoted by free-standing seating and table units of different sizes and styles. Another significant design feature was that this street furniture should be manufactured using hardwood timber and vibrant, colourful steel which would mirror the university’s coastal setting.

Realising a design with Broxap

A particular concern for the client was that they wanted to find a UK manufacturer that could carry out a value engineering exercise on Upcircle’s initial design scheme. It was at this stage that decision makers within the university approached Broxap to discuss the overall vision. As a result of these scoping meetings, Broxap was able to work with Upcircle to propose a concept of their design using an extension of our Litchard range in order to accommodate the exact requirements of the project.

This extension included a modified ‘single slat’ backrest for the Litchard Seat and a longer table top to make the Litchard Picnic Unit accessible for wheelchair users. Finally, we also created some exciting, brand new products: an ergonomic sun lounger in steel-framed timber, various cylindrical steel planters and a collection of steel-framed ‘single’ benches and outdoor ‘coffee’ table style units.

The client wanted the area to be complete in time for their students’ arrival at the start of the new academic year. In spite of the time constraints, the Broxap team was able to complete the manufacture of the order to our meticulous standards, delivering a complete, contemporary exterior design in a timely manner. In fact, this range was so successful that two on-campus cafés also chose to replace their outdated external furniture with our Litchard seating.

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