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Is Edinburgh's UNESCO World Heritage Status Under Threat?

"A spectre," writes Kevin McKenna for The Guardian, "thought happily to have been exorcised from the heart of beautiful Edinburgh, is stalking the city’s old wynds and crevices once more." To put it more bluntly, the "formal recognition of [the Scottish capital] as one of the world’s most beautiful cities is under threat, amid a battle for the soul of its most historic quarter." As the UNESCO inspectorate moves in to determine whether the city's World Heritage Status should be renewed McKenna laments, through a series of case studies, the potentially bleak built future of one of Britain's most loved urban centres.

RIBA Future Trends Survey Records Optimistic Prospects

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA)’s Future Trends Survey for September 2015 shows a level of consistency with the workload index remaining unchanged at a balance figure of +21. All nations and regions within the United Kingdom returned positive balance figures, with practices in Scotland responding most confidently about workloads in the next quarter. The report states that practices remain firmly positive about overall workload prospects in the medium term, though with "an apparent leveling-off in the rate of growth."

Sutherland Hussey Architects' Wins Award for Best Building in Scotland

The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) has deemed Sutherland Hussey Architects' latest housing scheme the "Best Building" in Scotland by awarding it the 2015 Doolan prize. The "West Burn Lane" project was said to be the "clear winner" of the £25,000 award, as AJ reports, selected from a shortlist of 12 Scottish buildings.

The brick courtyard housing project was lauded by the jury for being "expertly woven" into the context of St. Andrews - one of Scotland's most historic areas.  

Call for Sessions: SAH 2017 Annual International Conference

At its 2017 Annual International Conference in Glasgow, Scotland, SAH will offer a total of 36 paper sessions. The Society invites its members, including graduate students and independent scholars, representatives of SAH chapters, and partner organizations, to chair a session at the conference. As SAH membership is required to chair or present research at the Annual International Conference, non-members who wish to chair a session will be required to join SAH at the time of submitting a session proposal.

57°10 Lecture Series

An architecture lecture series society at the Scott Sutherland School of Architecture and the Built Environment in Aberdeen, Scotland. The society, 57°10, has been running for 27 years and invites guest lecturers to the school to talk about the ideas and projects explored by their practices. The society prides itself in being student led; providing lectures that will in turn inspire our future architects, perhaps on topics out-with the discourse of the school.

Technology and Innovation Centre / BDP

  • Architects: BDP
  • Location: University of Strathclyde, 16 Richmond St, Glasgow, Glasgow City G1 1XQ, UK
  • Area: 25000.0 sqm
  • Project Year: 2015
  • Photographs: David Barbour

© David Barbour © David Barbour © David Barbour © David Barbour

Making Space for Making Art / Sutherland Hussey Harris

© Sam Proctor Courtesy of Sutherland Hussey Harris Courtesy of Sutherland Hussey Harris © Keith Hunter

See All 24 Projects Shortlisted for RIAS' 2015 Awards

The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) has shortlisted 24 projects for its 2015 awards, the single most important recognition of architectural achievement in Scotland. This year’s judging panel, chaired by Iain Dickson PPRIAS, will now visits all 24 sites to determine which projects are “worthy” of an award, only choosing those in which they feel “best address the key role of architecture: to improve the quality of people’s lives.”

See all 24 shortlisted projects, after the break. 

Theatre Royal, Glasgow / Page Park Architects Reid Building, Glasgow School of Art / Steven Holl Architects with jmarchitects Regency Dormer, Edinburgh / Konishi Gaffney Architects The Mill, Scottish Borders / WT Architecture © Andrew Lee

Which Architect Could Restore The Glasgow School Of Art?

With the Charles Rennie Mackintosh retrospective opening today at the Royal Institute of British Architects in London Rowan Moore, writing for The Guardian, asks "which architect could restore Mackintosh's masterpiece [in Glasgow]?" The Glasgow School of Art, parts of which were devastated by fire in May of last year, is in the process of selecting a restoration architect from a shortlist of five. Yet for Moore "there are examples of clumsiness and stodginess in some of the past projects of those included that should be allowed nowhere near the School of Art."

Charles Rennie Mackintosh Exhibition To Open Next Month In London

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) have announced that a new exhibition exploring the Scottish designer and artist's celebrated, but difficult, career is to open next month in London. Mackintosh Architecture will be the first exhibition solely devoted to his architecture, offering the opportunity to view over sixty original drawings, watercolours and perspectives spanning the entirety of his working life. Seen together, they "reveal the evolution of his style from his early apprenticeship to his later projects as an individual architect and designer." Drawings on display will also show his collaboration with the accomplished artist and designer Margaret Macdonald, his wife.

Video: Drone Tour Inside St. Peter's Seminary

Scotland's Grade-A listed Brutalist St. Peter's Seminary, abandoned for the past 25 years, is being rediscovered through drone technology. The building, which was originally designed by Gillespie, Kidd & Coia in 1966 and heavily inspired by the work of Le Corbusier ("with Scottish inspirations"), has recently been offered a new lease of life. London-based Avanti Architects, along with Glasgow-based  and NORD Architectsrecently released the first images of their plans to breathe new life into the iconic building. This filmed footage not only gives a sense of how dilapidated the structure is in its current state, but also hints at the exciting possible future it has as an arts venue.

Kengo Kuma's V&A Dundee Budget "Blown By 70%"

When Kengo Kuma's concept for the new Victoria and Albert Museum of Design (V&A) in Dundee, Scotland, was unanimously chosen as the winning design in late 2012, the jurors had stated that the proposal has been "subject to exhaustive scrutiny, including having external assessors do a detailed examination of projected costs." They stated that they "did not have to exclude any of the submissions on grounds of affordability." It is now reported, a little over two years later, that the original £45million budget has now exceeded £80million in spite of the fact that the building has already been 'redesigned' once in order to try to reign in soaring costs.

St. Peter's Seminary: 'La Tourette' With "Scottish Inspirations"

In an article for The Guardian, Rowan Moore explores the state and future of the Grade A listed Brutalist Seminary of St. Peter, "where the influence of Le Corbusier’s monastery of La Tourette combines with [...] Scottish inspirations." Although the building is often seen as wholly unique in the canon of religious buildings, it is still comprised of traditional elements - "cloister, chapel, refectory, cells - but rearranged over multiple levels in unexpected ways, alternately enclosing and opening up to its surroundings."

Further Delays Predicted for Kengo Kuma's V&A Dundee as Costs Rise

The latest obstacle in a tumultuous project history, figures released by Dundee City Council predict that Kengo Kuma and Associates' V&A museum in Dundee will cost an extra £31 million. Since unanimous selection by a competition jury in 2010, the project has been plagued by budget concerns, prompting a relocation from the original waterfront on the River Tay to a site further inland in 2012. Described by the V&A as "much more than just a building," Kuma's V&A Dundee is now slated to welcome the public in 2018, three years later than originally planned. Learn more about the delays after the break.

© Kengo Kuma & Associates © Kengo Kuma & Associates © Kengo Kuma & Associates © Kengo Kuma & Associates

Five Practices Shortlisted To Restore Mackintosh's Glasgow School Of Art

Five practices are the running to restore Charles Rennie Mackintosh's celebrated school of art in Glasgow. UK based John McAslan + Partners (who restored Mackintosh's last major commission), Scottish practice Page \ Park, and London and Hong-Kong based architects Purcell are all in the frame to lead the restoration of the Mackintosh Building amid a debate over how best to approach the rebuilding of the library and the areas of the building that were devastated by fire in May of last year. The selection of Avanti Architects and LDN Architects complete the rostra.

When Does A Restoration Become A Replica?

Following the unfortunate series of events that saw the Glasgow School of Art's (GSA) iconic Mackintosh Library devastated in a fire in May of last year, a leading Scottish architect has stated that he is "seriously against the idea of remaking the library" as a replica of Charles Rennie Mackintosh's original acclaimed design. Talking to the Scottish Herald, Professor Alan Dunlop has stated that "there is actually no way you can replace it as it was [as] there was 100 years of age and patina that you would have to replicate." Furthermore, he believes that it would not be something that "Mackintosh would do," citing the expansion of "his work in the years between each part of the Mackintosh Building being built [in 1899 and 1909]" as justification. It is his feeling that "the former library had essentially become a museum [and] not a viable working room for students and staff."

Avanti and NORD Selected to Revitalize St Peter’s Seminary in Scotland

Restored chapel visualisation. Image Courtesy of James Johnson
Restored chapel visualisation. Image Courtesy of James Johnson

London-based Avanti Architects, along with Glasgow-based ERZ Landscape Architects and NORD Architects, have released the first image of their design to revitalize one of Scotland’s modern masterpieces: St Peter’s seminary. Designed by Gillespie, Kidd & Coia in 1966, and built on the former Kilmahew estate, the Category-A listed Brutalist structure was voted as the best modern building in Scotland by readers of Prospect Magazine in 2005. However, the building has been abandoned for the past 25 years, leaving it dilapidated and facing numerous problems.

Public art charity NVA is leading a  £7.3 million initiative to rehabilitate the building and its surrounding landscape to create an art, heritage and educational site. The designs include a performing arts venue with a 600-person capacity, informal indoor and outdoor teaching spaces across the 144 acre site and over 4 kilometres of woodland paths. In addition, the site will contain a heritage exhibition and a locally-led productive garden.

Historical 1967 View towards the stepped glass roof. Image  Chapel rooflight detail. Image Courtesy of GKC Archive Processional Ramp 1967. Image Courtesy of GKC Archive Side altars 1967. Image Courtesy of GKC Archive