After winning the Aberdeen City Garden competition in early 2012, Diller, Scofidio + Renfro‘s ‘Granite Web’ design was rejected over the summer in a 22-20 city council vote for being overly expensive. Despite public approval the proposal, which totaled a whopping £140m, was rejected in favor of a collection of more fiscally responsible city projects, such as refurbishing the Aberdeen Art Gallery and redeveloping the site of the St. Nicholas House.
Just recently, the City of Aberdeen announced a £300m city-wide plan of improving roads, schools and cultural buildings, with only £20m allotted for the city center, which will be pedestrianized but not much else. Thus, confirming the “final nail in the coffin“ for DS+R’s ambitious web of lush gardens and cultural landmarks.
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The life of a city-funded project is a tumultuous one. After winning a design competition early this year and receiving public support to move forward, Diller, Scofidio + Renfro’s “Granite Web” design for the redevelopment of the nineteenth-century Terrace Gardens in Aberdeen, Scotland was recently rejected by the city council in a 22-20 vote. The project promised to bring a revived pulse to the heart of the city centre with a public space that would bring a year-round civic garden onto the “unattractive” Denburn dual carriageway and railway line.
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Aberdeen City Garden Trust has announced Diller Scofidio + Renfro (DS+R) as winner of the international design competition that will transform the center of Aberdeen. The New York City based firm will be working with the Scottish practice Keppie Design and Philadelphia landscape architects OLIN. The “rich and varied” shortlist included Diller Scofidio + Renfro, Foster + Partners, Gustafson Porter, Mecanoo, Snøhetta & Hoskins and West 8. After an extended run-off between DS+R and Foster + Partners, the Aberdeen City Garden competition will be DS+R’s first major win in a European design competition.
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