Margate Project Final Evaluation

This Margate Project has been my favourite project so far whilst studying at university. It is a project I will not forget, spending two months of the project in lockdown amid the horror that has been the Corona-Virus.

The Margate project has been one I have felt really captured my interest. Doing the Site Surveys and having access into a no longer public space was very interesting and put a very real focus on the project, making it what felt less like a university project and more one that could benefit people and the community in the real world. Learning the history of Margate and understanding the community was something that centred my project and was at the core of my design choices and outcomes.

The final design proposal, creating my Beach Rat Skate Hub, was definitely out of my comfort zone but something that I am proud to have rose to the challenge of and found enjoyable and energising to design for. It has taught me to step out of my comfort zone in the future and be more experimental as well as embrace challenges and the natural organic design process with confidence.

In terms of my precedents I have thoroughly enjoyed working in the styles of Perry Kulper and Benjamin Fern and feel that following in their design footsteps has helped me truly work on developing and adapting my own drawing style and techniques. Digital drawing is that I have not had a background in. The first year is completely hand drawn, and so being my first year of digital drawings and fully using the software I am pleased with how much my skills have developed.

Due to Corona-Virus I was unable to experiment with modelling and physical outcomes as much as I had anticipated. I had wanted to experiment more with cast and 3D-Printing but this is something I will do in the upcoming year. I am pleased with my clay conceptual model outcomes and will work with clay and sculpting more in the future for material and conceptual models. I will also aim to be confident in Rhino and producing models through the software in the upcoming year.

To conclude, it has been a project I will not forget for many reasons. It has taught me the importance of getting out of my comfort zone and trusting the design process. It has also developed my skills in a variety of ways and I have learnt a lot about the process of research, development an design. I look forward to developing my skills and gaining more experience as I move deeper into the design field and into my final year of my degree.

Final Design Perspectives

These perspective show what it is like to be in the proposed skate hub space. I have maintained consistency throughout my proposal drawings by using Benjamin Fern’s atmospheric style whilst also highlighting areas of natural light and shadow with the use of contrast. As my final drawings were designed around my conceptual models, I have used collages of my models to include these in the perspective as well as the original photographs of the Sunshine Cafe to highlight that the original features of the cafe have been kept the same to maintain an important part of Dreamland and Margate’s history.

Perspective I: Skater in Motion
Perspective II: Skater in Skate Zone
Perspective III: Beach Rat Cafe Zone
Perspective IV: Skateboarder in Motion with Beach Rat Merchandise on Wall


Circulation Diagram
This circulation diagram highlights how people move around the space. Following on from my Spatial/ Environmental notation diagrams this diagram develops the stories of the original characters, with an additional character, a member of staff who works at the Beach Rat Cafe. Th e directional marks highlight what arrow they are moving in and follows their journey throughout the space. In doing this diagram it helps to see what areas would be more congested and how people use the space.
Circulation, Spatial and Programmatic Diagram
This diagram has been more of an experimental approach to producing my diagrams and I have combined certain elements to see how the space was correspond together as a whole. The base of the drawings is the original charcoal rubbings that I took in Phase One, Site Survey I and I have used these as a base to highlight how I am designing around the pre-existing and that the foundation and core features of the Sunshine Cafe are remaining untouched. This this then layered with the circulation diagram highlighting the proposed final floor plan and how people move around the space. This layer is then developed with audio diagrams highlighting where sounds would be coming from and what areas would have more sounds either due to larger skate zones or cafe/ social zones. The outside of the circulation diagram highlights key programmatic moments (taken from my final proposed sections) and pin point moments in the space as well as how the space would intended to be used either through a social, educational or hospitality purpose.

Spatial/ Environmental Notations

These series of spatial notations represent what it is like to be in the space creating a very real scenario of how the space could be used and function. My point of reference for these series of Diagrams is Sarah Wigglesworth Table Manners showing a table, dinner party scenario and how human interactions change and alter the space within the setting.

Sarah Wigglesworth + Jeremy Till: Table Manners
Spatial/ Environmental Notation I

This first spatial notation is the start of the series of Diagrams and highlights one journey of a Skater in the Beach Rat skate hub. The key as shown in the top left of the diagram shows how the body has been adapted into a symbolic key using very geometric shapes and patterns. The skater enters the space for the first time from the stairs and heads towards the cafe area towards the windows of the space, a feature that most people are attracted to. He then wonders around the area and to the kiosk first looking around and familiarising himself with the space as it is his first time being there. He then goes to the skate zones and skates in in the areas for a period of time before exiting in the space down the stairs from which he entered. The areas where there are more movement and interaction for example the skate zones to the left of the space have more of a cluster of shapes and include more body movement other than arms as shown for the rest of the space. This shows areas in the space that will be areas of higher movement compared to the cafe area which would be more relaxed.

Spatial/ Environmental Notation II

The next diagram highlights another person in the space (as shown by the purple symbols) and suggests how another person with a different personality would use the space different and what areas they would prioritise. The story being the purple symbols represent a skate fan who is in the space to use the cafe area and watch skaters in action as well as interact and socialise with others in the space. This skate fan is familiar with the space and heads straight to the kiosk to purchase a beverage and then walks around the space. They stand watching the skateboarders in action for a while, as shown by the places where there is more actions and clustered symbols, representing more movement and more time spent in these zones. They then wander around the area, stopping and watching at different zones and pausing in the cafe area before exiting the space down the same stairs that they entered.

Spatial/ Environmental Notation III

The final diagram in the series introduces another skater who is friends with the purple skate fan an also a skater who uses the space freely to learn and develop their own skate skills. The orange skater enters from the stairs as everyone else has and heads straight to the skate zone to start using the space. He does not do this for a long period of time as the clusters are less intense as the first skater’s suggesting that he moves more quickly and freely through the skate zones. He then enters in the cafe area where he socialises with the purple skate fan to have a conversation with for a while before exiting down the stairs through the opposite end suggesting that someone who uses the space would use other facilities of Dreamland as well as the Beach Rat Skate Hub.

Close up of Spatial Notation III

Hybrid Diagrams

These series of Hybrid drawings shows different types of actions and movements to expect in the space including skateboarding moves, mentoring and members of the skate community interacting.

Hybrid Drawing I: Skate in Motion

This hybrid drawing focuses on two different skate zones in the space in the space and how they can be used. I have shown movement through the use of copy and paste and changing opacity of images to show movement and highlight certain positions. I have placed it on the final design of the map to show where these actions would take place.

Hybrid Drawing II: Skateboard Close Up

This hybrid drawing focuses on close ups of the skateboarding actions and movements involved. Again I have shown the movement through the space by focusing on opacity and copy and paste of images.

Hybrid Drawing III: Onlookers Watching Skateboarders in Action.

In the final series of the hybrid drawing it highlights more of a skate community and shows how skateboarding can unite a community. To the right of the drawings show three onlookers in the Beach Rat cafe as they admire skateboarders in action on the opposite side. This drawing also highlights that you do not have to be a skater to fit in with the community but can just enjoy the atmosphere and come to watch and support other skateboarders.

Material Collage

Material Collage

My material collage highlights key textures for my final skate hub design whilst still in keeping with Benjamin Fern’s architectural drawing style. The textures are a mixture of photographs from the original Sunshine Cafe, taken on the first and second site visits, as well as up close textures from my clay conceptual models. By combining the two textures it represents marrying the old with the new as the old Sunshine Cafe comes alive with the new Skate Park design. The original space is also not being changed drastically with my new design but maintaining the majority of the original features as it is such a vital part of Margate’s history, so the acknowledgement of having original textures in the collage signifies this.

Beach Rat Skate Hub Final Designs

Earlier version of floor plan for Beach Rat Skate Hub
Final Design for Beach Rat Skate Hub

Completed in the style of my precedent, Benjamin Fern, this is the final floor plan for the Beach Rat Skate Hub. It is quite simple as I tried not to over complicate the space as it is a relatively small space to work with. To the left of the space is the skate zones which follow round the space. There would most likely be rules of a one way system but those rules would be put in space by the skate community. The shapes of the skate zones have been designed from my earlier clay concept models and developed for the final design by being put into a sequence of shapes and obstacles. To the right of the space is the Beach Rat cafe. Instead of designing chairs and tables I have designed a skate ramp like bench for anyone to come and take a seat in the cafe. By designing this in this way creates more of a consistent look and feel for the skate hub as well as having the possibility to use the benches as extra skate space if needed. The kiosk has also been designed this way as shown to right of the stairs. By also keeping a relatively simple design allows an almost blank canvas for the skate community to develop their own space with creative freedom as well as maintaining the original structure and history of the building by not making drastic changes to the space.

Beach Rat Skate Park Section

This section, again in the atmospheric and high contrast style of Benjamin Fern, highlights the consistency of the space. To the left is the skate zone as in the middle of the space. To the right is the Beach Rat cafe and shows someone sitting on the skate bench. The consistency of the space highlights how different ares can be used in multiple ways such as the cafe zone being used as an additional skate area.

Another Section of the Skate Hub showing the cafe area

Beach Rat Animation

To go with my proposal, almost like an advertisement, I created a fun animation using Photoshop and Timeline and then adding music I edited on Adobe Audition to go with the animation. This was my first animation and it was fun to do, something I enjoyed and would like to do more of in the future.

Full Animation Link
Animation Still I

The animation starts with a sad Beach Rat as he realises there is nothing for him in The Sunshine Cafe and he is alone in the community. The music throughout the animation is Rats by Ghost in a synth wave version on Youtube to go with the theme of an old version game/arcade game.

Animation Still II

Beach Rat then goes onto daydream and imagine what could become of the Sunshine Cafe.

Animation Still III

Beach Rat then imagines a cool alternate world that turns into a loading screen for an old arcade game or Playstation game giving Beach Rat and fun and nostalgic vibe.

Animation Still IV

The animation then continues onto a character selection showing three different skateboarding rats to choose from, again like an old game.

Animation Still V

Beach Rat then comings onto the screen skate boarding in the Sunshine Cafe space with the proposed conceptual models edited into the space. He moves slow and only horizontally and vertically like in an old retro game with rigid movement.

Animation Still VI

Beach Rat continues to skate in the new skate hub space.

Animation Still VII

Beach Rat continues to Skate in the space doing two consecutive loop tricks in the air and exiting off the right hand side of the space.

Animation Still VIII

The animation ends with ‘Totally Rad’ repeating as though the came has ended like in an old arcade game highlighting the fun advertisement of Beach Rat and emphasising Skateboarding by using old skate slang.

Formative Review: Proposal to Thanet District Council

Due to the Corona-Virus we were unable to present our pitch to the council as we were meant to. This presentation has been recorded and you can find it in the link below.

Slide One: Introduction

I am proposing a skate hub community centre for the Margate and Thanet district in the old and vacant Sunshine Cafe of Dreamland. The Skate hub will be open to anyone and will be a safe space for young people and other members of the community to come together and unite.

Slide Two: Current Scenario Diagram

This current scenario Diagram highlights the endless cycle for young people in Margate. One of the most deprived areas in the country, the Thanet District is high in crime, higher than the average in Kent and the rest of the UK. This in turn creates a negative perception of young people which then leaves then without many or no opportunities to move past this negative perception. Because of the lack of opportunities available to young people they have less need to want to aspire for more in the future so near 25% of young people in the district leave education with inadequate or no qualifications. The last of educations, opportunities and aspirations then leaves young people not wanting to give back to the community thus returning to more crime and continuing the endless futile cycle.

Slide Three: Proposed Scenario Diagram

This diagram highlights the positive cycle for young people in Thanet District if The Beach Rat Skate hub was put in place. Young people would be occupied and have a purpose thus meaning that there is less crime in the area and people have more of a positive perception of young people. This means that there is then more opportunities for young people meaning young people want to aspire to more gaining adequate and good qualifications. Then due to the positive attitude towards young people and more opportunities they will be more willing to give back to the community resulting in less crime and so the cycle continues.

Slide Four: Six Point Manifesto

My manifesto consists of six points. A skate hub for the people of Margate in the old Sunshine Cafe. The Skate hub will have the identity of the brand Beach Rat which will also be a project taking over by the skate community. Beach Rat merchandise will be on sale on site alongside an on site cafe for the skate community, as well as the wider community and tourists welcoming them to a new trendy hot spot, putting Margate back on the map. The Skate hub will also have mentors to teach people how to skate and support the local community and young people. Beach Rat will hold in house events and events with the wider community to unite a divided community. The positive change in Margate and the uniting of a community will then reduce crime help changing the reputation of Margate.

Slide Five: Reconect Diagram

This diagram shows how the manifesto will happen. With the renovation of the sunshine cafe with community help and effort the local people will be able to create a skate hub, a safe space for the young people in the local area. The Beach Rat identity will be a project for the local skate community to get involved in. Local business and creative people can also help the Beach Rat community make the project a successful and give young people the skills they require to produce a successful project. The group project will then work together to sell their designed and made products from start to finish on site where there will also be an on site cafe. Giving jobs to the local people and again welcoming outsiders in the community. With the mentoring that will take place in the Skate park there will be an element of education and young people learn skills and gain confidence as they learn to skate. The mentoring and the sense of community then connects a divided Margate community. The Beach Rat community will then host and plan events and workshops to educate the wider community. With a purpose and understanding of the wider community, crime will reduce in the area making Margate once again a safe space.

Slide Six: Research Page

An example of a successful skate park is Southbank Centre in London. It has been a skate space since the 1970’s and is known as a place of urban culture and freedom of creativity. This skate park is a popular spot and attracts many visitors bringing together a skate community.

Slide 7: Research Page

This is a community made skate park in Bolivia, Pura Pura. The local community came together with the campaign ‘Make Life Skate Life.’ The skate park has been a successful community spot. They also were successful in creating a community skate house where youth clubs, workshops and educational workshops could take place creating a safe space for the community.

Slide Eight: Programmatic Diagram

This programmatic Diagram shows a rough proposal of what could happen to the Sunshine Cafe. Towards the right side of the plan show the kitchen and seating areas of the cafe as well as Beach Rat Merchandising stands. The left area of the space shows the uniquely designed skate park for the community.

Slide Nine: Proposed Perspective I

This shows the possibility of what could happen with the space. I have edited my conceptual models in the Sunshine Cafe space and shown how the space could be used.

Slide Ten: Proposed Perspective II

This shows another perspective of the Sunshine Cafe and what could happen with the space, again with edited conceptual models which are used in wthe skate zone of the Hub.

Recording of Proposal

Beach Rat

Beach Rat is my chosen identity and brand name for my skate hub meaning, a skater who spends a lot of time skating at/by the beach. I wanted to make the brand and skate hub fun and different by having a rat as the mascot and Beach Rat would be the identity of the skate community.

Digital Drawing of Beach Rat

Beach Rat Font

The idea of the Beach Rat project would be for young people, interested in skateboarding or just want to be involved in a young community, to design and upkeep the Beach Rat brand. The purpose behind this would be to inspire and encourage young people to become creative gaining skills such as running a brand, designing, planning and producing products from start to finish. Local businesses and creative people could also get involved teaching and helping young people through creative workshops and supporting then through their take-over project.

Early scenarios of merchandise being sold in the space
Early scenarios of merchandise being sold in the space

Money raised can be put back into the project and put into the skate hub to keep the Beach Rat community going.