A Campus Emerges at Bedford Square: Enabling a Paradigm Shift
Having been founded in 1847, the AA opened as a day school in 1901 and moved to Bedford Square in 1917. The school that originally occupied 34–35 Bedford Square now inhabits 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39 Bedford Square – the entire sweep captured in the image above, and 4 and 16 Morwell Street (behind Bedford Square) too.
The ten-building campus of 68,000 square feet means that for the first time in 50 years all students and staff are located at Bedford Square, and planning work can begin for a campus masterplan. In October 2010 school meetings with Brett Steele, AA Director and Clare Wright of Architects Wright & Wright presented the draft masterplan for the AA. Patterns of use and occupation established with the AA's original occupation on the Square, which created studios on the rear block of the properties, with more formal meeting, presentation and public programme spaces on the front side facing Bedford Square gardens are still working as a strong organisational feature of the AA. Consultation and planning continues, work proceeds… some departments have already relocated (see Notices for up-to-date information about new studio and office space).