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Hypocaust Building

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location St. Albans
function exposition space, pavilion
contributed by Cordula_Zeidler

Today St. Albans is just one of many towns in the dense commuter belt surrounding London, but its roots reach back to the first century AD, when it was a Roman settlement called Verulamium. A show-piece of that time, a tiled floor mosaic with floral patterns, was excavated in the 1920s. The mosaic, which also features an underfloor heating system (a hypocaust), was for many years housed in a simple brick building, but now it has new accommodation. Seen from afar, the new building appears as an undefined white block. Only on closer inspection does it reveal its beauty. Its enclosing walls are faced with glass reinforced concrete panels imprinted with oyster shells, a nod towards Roman building materials that included shells, while simple rosette-shaped openings in the walls are a visual allusion to the floral pattern of the mosaic. The building's tilted roof opens up towards the park, reflecting the mosaic to the outside world via a mirror-faced soffit.

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Hypocaust Building
Verulamium Park
United Kingdom
Project is public!
Opening hours Monday - Saturday: 10.00am - 5.30pm Sunday: 2.00pm - 5.30pm Last admission: 5.00pm Open all year, except between Christmas and New Year - please check with the museum for details.
How to get there? Car:10 min. from J21A on M25 or J9, J7 or J6 on M1. Follow signs for St. Albans and Roman Verulamium. There’s a large car park at Verulamium, when full: alternative parking available at Westminster Lodge Sports Centre, Holywell Hill (20 min walk away through Verulamium Park) Bus: No 300 from City Centre. Rail: St. Albans City Station, Thameslink from Kings Cross, then bus/taxi - St. Albans Abbey Station, Silver link from Euston/Watford, then bus/taxi or a 20 min walk through Verulamium park.
Completion 2004
Client City of St. Albans
Project ID 1260
Latitude/Longitude 51°44'57N 00°21'23W
Contributed by Cordula_Zeidler
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