Over 100 of the UK’s leading architects and designers have come together to create The Museum of Architecture’s Gingerbread City 2019. Trading concrete and wood for dough and sweets they have designed and built a futuristic mini-city, which explores the theme transport and how we might move around our cities in years to come.
Opening to the public on Saturday 7 December at London’s iconic Somerset House, the City is constructed entirely from gingerbread and confectionery and includes high-rise buildings, office blocks and apartments, a university, stadium, tram station, urban farm, park and ferry terminal, five bridges, cycle ways and pedestrian paths. There are reinterpretations of well-known landmarks like ‘Battersea Sugar Power Station’, ‘Gingerbread Modern’, ‘Sugarset House’, Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus as well as a moving train.
Based on a masterplan developed by Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design, The Gingerbread City champions sustainable design ideas and innovation on a mini scale.
Speaking about this year’s City, Melissa Woolford, founder and director of Museum of Architecture, said: “It’s an absolute pleasure to bring The Gingerbread City to life again this year. We have over 100 top UK architects and designers taking part – showcasing innovative and sustainable design ideas – with the aim of getting people thinking about their built environment and how we want to live in our cities. The Gingerbread City exhibition supports our year-round work as an architectural charity, and this year, sees us able to set up a grant-giving fund so we can support more public-facing and entrepreneurial projects.”
Hilary Satchwell, director Tibbalds Planning and Urban Design, said: “The Gingerbread City is a really important project for Tibbalds because of the way it makes everyone who visits think about cities and what they mean. It prompts questions about the many things that designers and placemakers have to deal with in creating interesting places that work for those that use them. This year the focus on transport and the opportunities that active travel and good connections can have on wellbeing and health when carefully planned into our places is something we are particularly passionate about. Fast, fun, edible urbanism is a great way into some important discussions about the value of place.”
The Gingerbread City is an annual exhibition now in its fourth year. Organised by Museum of Architecture, its aim is to connect the public with architecture in an exciting way, and spark important conversations around cities and how we live in them. Visitors can peek inside sectional buildings, understand how city planners interact with natural landscapes and be inspired by the creativity and dexterity of some of the UK’s top architects and designers.