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.
The Jurys' full citation:
This is a commercial residential development in a very particular location, where potential purchasers demanded spaces and finishes of an extremely high standard. This has been achieved. The (former architect) client worked closely alongside his architects at every stage.
Expertly woven into the existing fabric of St Andrews, although uncompromisingly contemporary, the development acknowledges the historic street pattern and scale of its special context. The external materials palette is limited and of extremely high quality. While the built fabric in the vicinity is predominantly structural stone, the use of a warm Continental brick with narrow courses is appropriate and welcoming.
A variety of different house types, some with integral garaging, punctuate the long front elevation on West Burn Lane. Careful shifts in level and depth along both front and rear elevations of the development add interest, while emphasizing the scale of the separate homes which come together in this virtuoso work of urban renewal.
Internal finishes are appropriately ‘high end’ with generous plans, taking maximum advantage of views. Both externally and internally, the detailing is meticulous and the development is full of interest. The client and the local planning authority are well worthy of praise for creating a fine, 21st century, housing development, wholly appropriate to the place and the needs of owners.