Blairgowrie Recreation Centre Scotland, Scottish swimming pool and leisure building, Passivhaus Perth and Kinross property news

Blairgowrie Recreation Centre building

15 June 2023

Location: Blairgowrie, Perth and Kinross, Scotland

Design: Holmes Miller, Architects

Work begins on Scotland’s first Passivhaus leisure development

Blairgowrie Recreation Centre Scotland building
image : Holmes Miller

Blairgowrie Recreation Centre building news

Work has begun on site to build the new £36m Blairgowrie Recreation Centre, Scotland’s first ultra-low energy swimming pool and leisure centre, designed by sustainable building experts, Holmes Miller architects.

The centre has been designed to meet industry-leading Passivhaus standards, which will result in a zero carbon building that will require little energy for space heating or cooling, driving down running costs and emissions.

The building, due for completion in late 2024/early 2025, will become the first swimming pool and leisure development in Scotland – and only the second in the UK – to achieve Passivhaus certification.

A replacement for the Perthshire town’s current 41-year old facility, the development is being funded by Perth and Kinross Council and delivered through Hub East Central Scotland, with BAM UK as the main contractor.

Blairgowrie Recreation Centre building
groundbreaking photo : Peter Devlin

As well as a showpiece six-lane competition swimming pool, the new centre will feature a games hall, sports hall, dance studio, fitness suite and classroom space and an external all-weather sports pitch. It will deliver the physical education curriculum for Blairgowrie High School, while also providing leisure facilities to the local community.

The carefully considered design features exposed wooden beams that create a soft and welcoming space which is markedly different from traditional designs for civic leisure facilities. Spaces have been orientated to ensure that any heat gain from sunlight will be focused on the pool area, helping to maintain a constant temperature in the Centre’s sports suite.

Yida Zhou, Project Architect at Holmes Miller, said: “Perth & Kinross Council have a clear vision of reaching carbon zero, and working on this project has been a brilliant opportunity to help them achieve that, through cutting-edge sustainable design.

“As Scotland’s first leisure centre designed to Passivhaus standards, hopefully this project will inspire more councils and investors to adopt this approach, given the significant carbon and revenue savings that it makes possible.”

Perth and Kinross Council leader Councillor Grant Laing said: “The new Blairgowrie Recreation Centre will make a tremendous difference to the lives of people in Eastern Perthshire so it is fantastic to see work is now underway.

“The current facility no longer meets the needs of residents and pupils at Blairgowrie High School. The new centre will deliver a new, modern pool, fitness and training courts and more to encourage people to lead more active and healthier lives.”

Gary, Bushnell, Chief Executive at hub East Central Scotland, who are managing the delivery of the project, said: “We have worked closely with Perth & Kinross Council throughout the development of this project and we look forward to delivering a high quality sport and leisure facility that will serve the community for many years to come.”

Blairgowrie Recreation Centre Passivhaus Facility – Building Information

Design team:

Contractor: BAM UK
Civil and structural engineer: BakerHicks
Building Services: Rybka
Passivhaus Designer: Sussed Sustainability Ltd

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