Department of Archaeology campus extension
for the University of East Anglia
Cambridge is the closest and most thorough department for resources. UEA is relatively under developed and lacks the facilities. The building program intends to create a state of the art department faculty that rivals Cambridge. The intervention will not only create a new top learning centre, but it will create a long term sea defence for the village of Happisburgh in the process, whilst allowing for eventual relocation of the core facilities.
The main design ideas revolve around the structure protecting the village through a a long term legacy that will be left behind once the core department has moved on. The department itself would be a set of removable spaces containing equipment/meeting areas/accommodation etc that make use of the eroding cliff to release beach land for excavation, once the area has been exhausted of finds, the full faculty can be relocated to another cliff of interest. The full intervention is an extension of the main campus, ie it is only intended for short stays for groups (potentially from different universities) to learn from a live dig that they can participate in. The self-sufficient mini-village will house day and night activities.
The structure will be slanted rather than fully following the line of the cliff, this will allow for a gradual release over a number of years. Excavations can then take pace as the cliff is taken away by the ocean waves to reveal land form the right time period. The spine of the structure will be a permanent, but hidden feature that will protect the village in future.
Now for a word that describes the temporary and permanent contrast…