Architect students help to design a community garden

Students from Cardiff University have been helping residents to plan their perfect green space

Architect students from Cardiff University help to design the Grange Gardens

Architect students at Cardiff University have been working with residents in Grangetown to plan a new community garden.

The trainees from the Welsh School of Architecture have been tasked with finding out what locals want from the new garden that will be completed in April.

The one-day workshop took place at the Grangetown Hub and aimed to help students to develop important professional skills.

Architects students from WSA, Cardiff University, display their plans in Grangetown hub

“The aim of today’s workshop is to help us communicate with the local people, to see whether our project can get their support and meet their needs,” said Danjian Wang, a MA student of WSA.

Yuchen Wang, another MA architect student said: “The workshop gives us opportunity to contact different stakeholders, to know their demands, then our ideas can become more diverse, and more aspects can be considered.”

According to Yuchen, architects always have different perspectives from real-life residents. More voices from residents can better their consideration on environment and background which may have never been expected before.

Danjian and Yuchen are architect students, who take part in the Grange Gardens planing

The initiative of the workshop is part of the Community Gateway project funded by Cardiff University and it offers a new way to deliver learning, according to lecturer Dr. Mhairi McVicar.

“With residents, it’s about being able to take ideas that residents have and trying to help and place the resources in the support to bring the ideas forward.”

“For academics, it teaches us constantly to rethink how we work,” said Dr.Mhairi McVicar. “Because there is always feedback from partners, it changes the way we think about how our structures and how our ecosystems in the way that research happens, and moving away from top down to research.”

Dr. Mhairi is the Project leader of the Community Gateway project

Shoruk Nekeb is a second year architect student. She hasn’t been involved in the project but was attracted by it: “I think seeing work examples and the way other people think is very beneficial. It triggered me as I might use this, or I might do this in my project. ”

The workshop was cooperated by Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff University, and Creative Cardiff. It also belongs to a range of activities for Fair Saturday, which is a global mobilisation, aiming to create a positive social impact every last Saturday of November.