Riverside Pavilion Lights Up Leisure


For just a matter of weeks, two-color pavilion highlights the shore of the River Thames, providing a space for dining and entertainment that brings lively socializing back into an industry-dominated area.

Known as the Erith Lighthouse—a reference to the way it is covered with see-through plastic that allows light to come through at night—the pop-up structure was designed to serve as a community gathering space for the months of August and September, according to Dezeen. Both entertainment and dining options are provided within, which draws visitors to the riverbank.

Erith Lighthouse

The semitransparent pavilion was designed by architects DK-CM, along with design studio The Decorators, notes Dezeen. In this endeavor, the studios sought to create a distinctive demountable structure made of polycarbonate, which uses theatre rigging systems as its framework and lends itself to a degree of portability. The see-through plastic allows for the a glow to be seen from inside the structure when it's dark.

Inside, there is a small catering kitchen and dining space. The pavilion also folds open in all directions.

Knight told Dezeen that the goal of the building was to be able to communicate visually across long distances, being seen across the town.

Located on the outskirts of London, the lighthouse is named for the town where it resides—Erith. The collaborative work was for a strategic study for the Bexley Council, which was looking into developing temporary projects for the area.

"Out of all the projects that we proposed in that study, the idea of placing a distinctive structure for dining and events right up against the Thames was the most popular," David Knight, co-founder of DK-CM, told Dezeen. "We were subsequently commissioned to design and deliver the pavilion, with The Decorators taking care of curation and programming."

Design Inspiration

The design for the Lighthouse draws from elements of local architecture, which, historically, has been comprised of lightweight industrial buildings. But, at its core, the design seeks to bring locals back to a time before industry on the waterfront, when the business offerings were more social, such as pubs.

The Lighthouse is designed to "evokes the fragile structures that once lined the Thames in Erith whilst also borrowing languages from Erith’s industrial present and recent history," Knight explains on his firm's website. "It celebrates Erith’s connection to the river in the context of significant growth in the local area."

Local response to the structure and the associated attempt to evoke a spirit of riverside leisure has been met with an “overwhelmingly positive” response, according to Dezeen.

The structure was funded by the Mayor of London as part of the Bexley’s Greater Erith Program, and will remain open into September.



Tagged categories: Architecture; Color + Design; Color + Design; Design build; EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); Public spaces

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