his body of work is some of the graphic design I produced while completing my final year of BA Architecture at Central Saint Martins. The work was used to depict and explain the concept of my self initiated final project, The Acadamy.

The Academy is a video gaming academy which aims to use the plurality and ice breaking nature of video games to make connections within the two sides of Caledonian Road. It provides workshops in all aspects surrounding the creation and promotion of successful video games, as well as spaces to practice and watch video gaming techniques, networking and conference spaces, official tournament areas for professional championships and a healthy food kiosk.

The design concept mirrors the need to escape from reality that is seen in a lot of people who play games, and stems from the video game – Minecraft. Minecraft creates conditions where, in the first few minutes of playing, gamers are encourages to use what they have on site to create structures.

The Academy is located in the middle of Caledonian Road, opposite Caledonian Road and Barnsbury Station. The site is a somewhat untouched area, densely populated by trees and with a wide variety of different terrains and gradients, which is similar to the conditions created in Minecraft. The form aims to adapt to site, so extensive structural work is kept to a minimum and spaces respond to the trees that populate the existing site.

Through adapting to site, a form for the proposal was designed augmenting the experience of walking through a wood, with a sense of discovery created with winding walkways and platforms of varying heights according the the existing gradient, which in turn creates a changing set of viewpoints when walking through the proposal. The use of materials that already exist within the site, with a focus on natural materials, juxtapose the high tech nature of the activities happening inside, giving an atmosphere of virtual reality.

To the south of the site lies Bemerton Estate, one of the most depraved areas of housing in Islington, with a huge problem of youth unemployment. To the east lies Barnsbury ward, where housing prices reach beyond £1 million, and is home to a large proportion of residents with high flying careers. The two areas currently rarely interact.Through using the Acadamy due to common interests in playing video games, the two social groups interact and can learn from each other, with an aim to inspire the youth of Bemerton Estate, by exposing them to career paths and developing skill sets they were previously unaware of.

Concept Points from izzy castro on Vimeo.