Birstall garage named among ‘world’s best designed petrol stations’ 0

birstall-garage-named-among-worlds-best-designed-petrol-stationsA petrol station in Birstall, Leicestershire has been named one of the world’s best designed petrol stations.

DesignCurial, a major design website, judged 200 gas stations around the world before narrowing the competition down to a ‘top ten’.

Stations are judged on their design, innovation, and their structures impact and relationship to the area around it.

The station in Birstall is owned by Esso, and is ranked sixth in the world overall. It was the only station from the UK to make the list.

It’s the second time the Grade II listed building has made it onto the list, the structure is iconic to millions of motorists thanks to its distinctive flying saucer like parasols and red and white design.

A spokesman for the design website said, “During the 1960s, American architect Eliot Noyes redesigned the look of all Mobil gas stations where it achieved its iconic appearance with project ‘Pegasus’.

“While recruiting the help of graphic design firm Chermayeff & Geismar who redesigned the Mobil logo, Noyes came up with the bold red, white and blue colour schemes that became instantly recognisable, particularly on the side of a highway.

“Successfully meeting the design brief of being immediately identifiable, the flying saucer-like parasols were created.

“The circular canopies – unique for their overlapping design – were first built in Connecticut in the USA in 1966. Soon, they were spread across the country and the UK and included variations in size.

“This particular petrol station (built 1978-79) in Birstall became an English Heritage listed building in 2012, and remains one of the last surviving examples of Noyes’ distinctive designs.

“It was remarkable to become a listed building as the strict criteria require significant architectural or historic significance to even be considered.”

Former English Heritage architectural historian, John Minnis said, “: “It’s quite unusual for a petrol station to be listed – this is one of just two from the 1960s.

“As far as we know, the one in Leicestershire is the last of its kind left in the country.”

At the top of the list is Pops Arcadia, on the famous Route 66. The cantilever structure is in Oklahoma and is famous for the 66ft soda bottle adorning the building.

Other entries to make the list are:  Orival Gas Station in Belgium, Wissol Gas Station in Georgia, USA, Batumi Petrol Station and Restaurant, also in Georgia, USA, Houten Service Station in the Netherlands, Helios House in Los Angeles, United Oil Gas Station, also in LA, Gazoline Petrol Station in Italy and Gas Galanta in Slovakia.

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