The decision to expand and re-site the Barbican shop from its prior location reflects evolving visitor expectations of what the broader cultural experience should offer in the 10 years since the original project to reshape the Barbican’s internal landscape was completed.

Re-purposing the site of the former advance tickets desk, the new shop occupies a prominent position, retaining, re-using and extending the super-scaled portal from the earlier project, while inserting a pair of low-level, finely detailed vitrines to mark the entrance, deal with the practical matter of security, as well as providing the opportunity for decorous display.

Beyond this threshold a new shop floor is inserted, spanning from column to column, but visually separated from the original structure by triple height voids, with a discreet stair and lift providing access to the lower level of the shop and so, for the first time, making the mezzanine genuinely accessible to all.

Sited at one end of the mezzanine, the shop creates a public destination where previously there was only private space, while its physical presence gives expression to the remainder of the mezzanine as the implied half-landing of the grand staircase sweeping between the ground floor foyers and their counterpart on the stalls level below.

City of London

New Barbican shop opens 14.12.16

Barbican Retail 17.05.16