H.R.H. The Typographer Royal and Grillust™ operative Rhiannon Robinson (33), is pictured below proudly opening The University of Cumbria's very first 'conceptual car park'. A small, but excited crowd looked on as the ribbon was cut and the car park declared officially open (although not for cars).
Conceptual car park? Officially open, but not for cars? How so? Well, thereby hangs a tale...
The Grillust™ team have looked on in admiration and wonder as, over the last three months, an area of unremarkable lawn and wildflowers has been transformed by a team of highly skilled Paviors into a tessellated, duotone masterpiece.
We soon discovered that creating a car park is a painstaking and time-consuming craft as day after day, we watched this group of accomplished professionals lay as many as 20 brindle or charcoal, 200mm x 100mm block pavers.
It was while observing this daily demonstration of craftsmanship, relatively precise geometry and, above all else, pride in a job quite well done, that it struck us that this exquisite work would quickly become ruined by cars. The blocks would become oil stained and rubber marked, the rectilinear geometry compromised by badly parked Micras and Golfs and the foundations potentially weakened by any vehicle weighing more than 30kg. It was unthinkable - we had to act!
Happily The University of Cumbria is a farsighted organisation and readily agreed to preserve the integrity of this virgin space before it could become sullied by vehicular ingress. On 25th April 2012 its future as a pristine, paviored parking space was secured when it was officially designating a 'conceptual' car park by the University board of directors. In this case. the word 'conceptual' was used in recognition of the fact that the 'idea' of a car park without cars is much more interesting than the physical reality.
Initially, it was thought that a simple gate would suffice to deny motor vehicle access but it was soon realised that this would be visually unobtrusive and so the final, typographic solution (illustrated in the following images) was adopted.
One unexpected bonus of the use of 1,600,000 pt type for the word 'no' has been that the adjacent Grillust™ H.Q. has never been easier to locate from space (see satellite view below).