Designed under BDP’s most famous partner, Keith Ingham, Preston Bus Station is part of one of those classically 1960s attempts to redevelop a town through the remaking of its circulation into walkways, underpasses and towers, with people separated from cars. The two towers create a distinctive, vigorous skyline, but the Bus Station is the masterpiece. From a distance and even up close, its glorious sweep is so simple, so confident, so right, that only a churlish antimodernist could fail to be seduced by it. Inside, matters are a little different – original signage battles with recent tat, and a clean is direly in order, but the aim to make such a mundane function into something special is still vividly palpable. Although there are proposals to demolish, rather sadly with BDPs own involvement, the Bus Station is held in encouraging public esteem – it recently won a local newspaper poll for the best building in Preston. Which it is.
Placed 2nd in the Placebook vote of favourite buildings by BDP
Owen Hatherley writer and journalist finds Preston Bus Station a masterpiece
Owen Hatherley is a freelance writer, working regularly for the New Statesman and The Wire, He writes about architecture, urbanism, politics and culture. His second book A Guide to the New Ruins of Great Britain was published by Verso in 2010. He also his own blog www.nastybrutalistandshort.blogspot.com
Preston Bus Station