Edinburgh Building News 2023

Edinburgh building news 2023, Lothian architecture images, Scottish architects, Scotland property design

Edinburgh Building News 2023: Architecture

post updated 12 January 2024

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Edinburgh Building News 2024

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2 January 2024
Scottish Architect News

The Glasgow School of Art Fire by Scottish architect Alan Dunlop has been shortlisted in the hand-drawn category of the Sir John Soane Museum GSA Architecture Drawing Prize – see Alan Dunlop

22 December 2023
Artisan Real Estate Purchases Edinburgh’s Caledonian Brewery
Caledonian Brewery Edinburgh homes
image courtesy of Artisan Real Estate
Regeneration specialist Artisan Real Estate has agreed terms with Heineken UK to purchase the 1.9-acre Caledonian Brewery in Shandon. Artisan has submitted a Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) to develop the historic site into a sustainable, low-carbon residential development, with plans to deliver around 170 new homes.  A major public consultation programme seeking feedback on the proposals for the site will start in February 2024:
Caledonian Brewery Edinburgh homes

19 December 2023
Builders Express Shock At Level Of Budget Cuts To Housing And Planning

Concern policies acting as a deterrent to investment

With the Scottish Government today announcing a 43 per cent funding cut for planning and a 33 per cent drop in the More Homes budget, Chief Executive of home building sector body Homes for Scotland Jane Wood said:

“We were prepared for a tough budget but, in the context of three local authorities having declared housing emergencies this year, the level of cuts we have seen across both the Affordable Housing Supply Programme and the planning system this afternoon is quite shocking.
“Coming on the back of last week’s statistics showing that the chronic undersupply of housing is intensifying, this not only threatens Scotland’s social wellbeing by perpetuating housing inequality but also its economic success and the transition to net zero.

“As we continue to highlight, private and affordable housing delivery are interconnected. With 30 per cent of affordable housing generated by the private sector, the more homes for sale that can be built, the more affordable homes will be available. Given the planning system is already on its knees, a cut of the magnitude announced today will serve only to increase delay and cost and do nothing to encourage crucial private sector investment.

“Indeed, we have spent a large part of this year flagging concerns to the Scottish Government that its policies are acting as a deterrent to investment. There is clear evidence now on the impact that the increasingly divergent policies are having on the attractiveness of Scotland as a place to invest in, these budget implications do nothing to mitigate that nor to ensure the housing needs of Scotland’s people are met.”

14 December 2023
London Road student accommodation at Jock’s Lodge
Design: Stallan-Brand
London Road Edinburgh student accommodation, Jock’s Lodge
property image courtesy of Stallan-Brand architects practice
London Road Edinburgh student accommodation
Alumno Group has been granted planning permission for the construction of high-quality purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) on London Road in Edinburgh in the Jock’s Lodge area of the city following a successful appeal. The development will help meet increasing demand from a growing student population and take pressure off local housing, while rejuvenating the area economically.

13 December 2023
RIBA statement on COP28 outcomes

RIBA President Muyiwa Oki said:
“Today’s historic agreement to deliver a new era of climate action is monumental. It’s the first time that a COP outcome has acknowledged the need to move away from fossil fuels – and this is a truly welcome and positive shift.”

Read more on the e-architect.com website.

13 December 2023
Heat Transition in Scotland
SNIPEF responds to the Scottish Government’s publication of ‘Starting a National Conversation on the Heat Transition in Scotland’. Industry expertise vital in shaping Scotland’s heat transition policy, says SNIPEF Chief Executive – take a look at the Glasgow Building News 2023 for the details.

12 December 2023
Scotland’s Housing Crisis Intensifying
New statistics show Scotland’s housing crisis intensifying with decreases across both the number of new homes of all tenures being started and completed – see the Glasgow Building News page for the details.

7 December 2023
MSIP Building News
Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc (MSIP) is an ambitious joint venture between Scottish Enterprise, Dundee City Council and Michelin, created in response to the closure of Michelin’s Dundee tyre factory in 2020. It aims to drive innovation in the Scottish economy and address the global climate emergency:
Michelin Scotland Innovation Parc Dundee

4 December 2023
Edinburgh College of Art Buildings Refurbishment
Edinburgh College of Art Refurbishment, ECA
image © Hawkins Brown
Edinburgh College of Art Refurbishment

4 December 2023
New Head Of Planning At Homes For Scotland

Home building sector representative body Homes for Scotland (HFS) has announced the appointment of Kevin Murphy as its new Head of Planning.

With a career spanning more than twenty years, Kevin joins from Persimmon Homes where he was Planning Manager, leading on planning applications, undertaking pre-application discussions and consultations, and making representations on matters of local and national planning policy.

His experience at the coalface of planning for residential development will be welcomed by HFS members who are facing considerable challenges following the transition to the new National Planning Framework 4. A key priority for Kevin will be promoting research which has been commissioned by HFS to help better quantify the level of housing need that exists across the country beyond current narrow measures.

Kevin said:

“The planning system is fundamental to Scotland’s social wellbeing and economic success, ensuring the country has the range and choice of homes that all those who live here require. This must, of course, be balanced with the climate emergency and environment, and I am looking forward to working both with members and other stakeholders to achieve this.”

HFS Chief Executive Jane Wood said:

“I am delighted to welcome Kevin to our team. His background and acute understanding of the issues our members are dealing with on a daily basis enables him to talk with real insight and authenticity – essential skills as we seek to increase understanding of the pressures facing home builders and make the case for better resourcing for our colleagues working in local authorities.”

4 December 2023
Homes For Scotland Submits Ideas On Planning System Ambitions

Responds to call from the new Planning Improvement Champion

Homes for Scotland (HFS), the sector body representing the country’s home builders, has responded to the call for ideas on planning system ambitions requested by the new Planning Improvement Champion Craig McLaren.

With the planning system having a major impact on the delivery of much needed new homes of all tenures but under considerable strain as a result of resourcing issues and the additional burdens placed on it by National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4), HFS has welcomed the opportunity to address the questions posed which are:

– What are the outcomes we need the planning system to deliver to have an impact?
– What makes a high-performing planning authority?
– How can we measure this?

See Glasgow Building News 2023 for the full news item.

22 November 2023

Lost opportunity says home building body as Scottish Parliament votes down housing emergency call

Scotland’s people deserve better

With today’s Labour’s motion that Scotland is experiencing a housing emergency defeated by a Scottish Government amendment which instead “recognises significant pressures with homelessness and temporary accommodation”, Homes for Scotland Chief Executive Jane Wood said:

“In the context of our capital city having recently followed Argyll & Bute in declaring a housing emergency and a shortfall of +114,000 new homes having accumulated across Scotland since 2008, it has never been more important to consider how we meet the country’s housing needs.

“We must stop going round in circles and find transformational solutions. Today’s debate underscored the importance of this and there were many passionate points made, but the agreed amendment is, to say the least, underwhelming. Given the scale of the problem facing our rural and urban communities, it’s a missed opportunity. Scotland’s people deserve better.”

10 November 2023
Wellbeing Hub and Lochies School outdoor space design competition, Clackmannanshire, central Scotland
Wellbeing Hub Design Competition, Lochies School
property image courtesy of J M Architects, Scotland

Secondary school pupils in Clackmannanshire are being invited to have a go at designing an outdoor health and wellbeing space for the county’s new Wellbeing Hub and Lochies School project. The creators of the winning designs will earn the opportunity to shadow and learn from the project’s lead architects and design team over the following months as the project progresses:

Wellbeing Hub Design Competition, Lochies School

2 November 2023
Home builders respond to Edinburgh’s housing emergency declaration

Reflects unfortunate reality across Scotland.

Homes for Scotland (HFS), the representative body for those organisations building the majority of the country’s new homes, including Affordable Housing, has responded to this morning’s declaration of a housing emergency by City of Edinburgh Council.

Chief Executive Jane Wood said:

“This is a dreadful position for our capital city to be in but unfortunately it reflects much of the reality across the whole of Scotland.

“Ensuring we have enough homes that people can afford and that meet the housing needs and aspirations of all those who live in, or want to live in, Scotland is fundamental to the social wellbeing of our population and our economic success.

“Whilst we welcome the attention being drawn to the housing crisis by the convener of Edinburgh’s Housing Committee, the Council must look at the consequences of the emerging City Plan 2030, which seeks to deliver fewer affordable homes than the Council itself identifies are required.

“This works against the aim of delivering more homes and will actually result in the inequality and affordability issues that are already so prevalent being further exacerbated.”

Wood highlighted the setting of a housing supply target that does not seek to meet all of the housing need and demand that the Council itself has evidenced; the brownfield-centric approach to the allocation of new sites for residential development, when a blended approach has historically proved vital to delivering enough homes; and the unviable and unavailable nature of many of the identified brownfield sites, many of which will be impossible to deliver due to other Plan policies.

She added:

“Our concerns are further heightened by the significant reduction in Edinburgh’s Minimum All Tenure Housing Land Requirement numbers published as part of the revised draft National Planning Framework 4 and which have fallen from 41,300 to 36,750.

“Independent analysis has already evidenced that the Plan is likely to significantly underdeliver the amount of homes required, with further research showing that it would result in the displacement of c400 businesses which would translate into the loss of 3,600 jobs with a cumulative loss to Edinburgh’s economy over ten years of c£2.6bn.

“We see from today’s motion that the Council notes the importance of collaborative working and hope that this involves those delivering the homes of all tenures that are required and recognises the interdependencies between private for sale and Affordable housing.

“We must stop going round in circles on the housing crisis and find transformational solutions to effectively resolve it. We and our members are committed to achieving this in partnership with local and central government.”

19 October 2023
Trinity Academy
Design: Holmes Miller Architects
Trinity Academy Edinburgh school building design
school building image courtesy of Holmes Miller
Trinity Academy Edinburgh secondary school building
A planning application has been submitted to City of Edinburgh Council for the second phase of development at Trinity Academy, a secondary school set within the Victoria Park conservation area in the north of the city.

14 October 2023
Poynder Apartments, Kelso, Peeblesshire, Scottish Borders, Southern Scotland
Design: Aitken Turnbull
Kelso High School
apartments photo : Rob Gray Photography
The original Kelso High School built in 1878, was re-built in 1939 in glorious Art-Deco style splendour and remains a Grade B-listed building, today as a brand new 36-Extra Care apartment facility:
Poynder Apartments Kelso, Scottish Borders

13 Oct 2023
Princes Street 347-bed hotel in Edinburgh
Princes Street Hotel Edinburgh city centre
building photo courtesy of Blackfinch Property
Financing will be used to facilitate the acquisition of a property overlooking Edinburgh Castle, which will form part of a luxury hotel development. Blackfinch Property, a rapidly growing agile lender to the residential and commercial real estate sectors, has completed a £5.6m bridging loan, with a 12-month duration, which will be used to help facilitate the development of a new hotel in the heart of Edinburgh:
Princes Street Hotel Edinburgh City Centre

13 October 2023
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh Palm Houses Restoration News
The ongoing restoration of the two A-listed Palm Houses at the heart of the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh (RBGE) will shortly receive a much-needed boost, thanks to a £500,000 grant from Historic Environment Scotland (HES). The grant will help fund the renovation of the fabric and structure of the buildings, including stonework, glazing and iron work:
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh Palm Houses Restoration

13 October 2023
Design Manager Job News
Edinburgh Architect Jobs

5 October 2023
First Scottish Passivhaus primary school to use CLT structure
Sciennes Primary School Edinburgh building
photo © Chris Humphreys
Sciennes Primary School Edinburgh building extension
The first Passivhaus primary school project in Scotland to be constructed from cross-laminated timber (CLT) has opened its doors in Edinburgh.
The £3.2 million, two-storey extension to Sciennes Primary School – a grade B-listed building in the Marchmont conservation area of the city – was designed by Holmes Miller, with Maxi Construction as the principal contractor.

29 September 2023
New Scottish galleries at the National, central Edinburgh
New Scottish galleries at the National Edinburgh
photo : dapple photography
The National Galleries of Scotland is delighted to announce that the stunning new Scottish galleries at the National will open to the public this Saturday (30 September 2023). A free experience for everyone to enjoy, right in the heart of Edinburgh’s city centre, the new Scottish galleries at the National showcase the very best historic Scottish art:

New Scottish galleries at the National, Edinburgh

29 September 2023
Scottish Modernism Talks
The Scottish Historic Building Trust launch theirr Autum lectures on 11th October with ‘Concrete Conservations: The Conservation of Scottish Modernism”. This six-lecture series launches with a lecture from Dr Alistair Fair, reader in architectural history at Edinburgh University. Edinburgh’s architectural heritage is usually defined in terms of the medieval Old Town and the eighteenth-century New Town:

Edinburgh Architecture Events

27 Sep 2023
Fife College’s new campus to use carbon-reducing hybrid materials
Fife College new campus building in Dunfermline
photo courtesy of Fife College
Fife College’s new campus in Dunfermline is using a unique steel/timber construction making it on course to meet Scottish Government carbon targets.
The scale of the College’s new campus means this new green approach has saved about 25% of the embodied carbon normally expected in a structure of this size:
Fife Architecture

23 Sep 2023
Dumfries High School Building News
hub South West has appointed Morgan Sindall Construction as construction partner with Ryder Architecture leading the design of the new school. Turner & Townsend have been appointed to deliver full cost management, project management and principal designer services for the project and Woolgar Hunter will lead on civil and structural engineering elements of the new school.:
Dumfries High School Building News

16 Sep 2023
Show Home Success at Rowanbank Gardens
Izzy Bastaini at the Rowanbank Gardens Show Home
image courtesy of Artisan Real Estate
The new show home at Rowanbank Gardens in Corstorphine, Edinburgh has proved hugely popular with savvy homebuyers with 100 visitors passing through its doors since it first opened in June 2023. More than 45 % of the properties have now been pre-sold at the award-winning development, described as a ‘spectacular blueprint for low carbon living’:
Rowanbank Gardens Edinburgh Homes

15 September 2023
Paisley Town Hall Regeneration
Paisley Town Hall Transformation – new photos of the building renewal by Architects Holmes Miller.

2023 Metzstein Architecture Discourse, Edinburgh

We announce that Xaveer De Geyter will present this year’s Metzstein Architecture Discourse, which will take place on Wednesday 11 October at the Gordon Aikman Lecture Theatre.

Xaveer De Geyter Architects (XDGA) is a Brussels and Paris-based office practicing architecture, urbanism and landscape design, founded in 1988 by Xaveer De Geyter after his experience at OMA/Rem Koolhaas. See our events page for details:

Edinburgh Architecture Events

8 August 2023
New Images Unveiled of ‘Spectacular’ Green Neighbourhood Proposed for Edinburgh City Centre
525 Park View, Edinburgh Ferry Road homes
image courtesy of the developers
New images showing the spectacular homes-led redevelopment of one of Edinburgh city centre’s largest potential development sites have been revealed. Regeneration specialist Artisan Real Estate, together with fund manager REInvest Asset Management S.A., has unveiled detailed plans to redevelop the former Deutsche Bank House at 525 Ferry Road, Edinburgh, near the Crewe Toll roundabout:
525 Park View, Ferry Road homes

8 August 2023
The Red Sandstone Building
Red Sandstone Leith Walk, Stead’s Place Office Building
photograph courtesy of the Drum Property Group
The renaissance of Leith Walk in Edinburgh is set to continue with the official launch of Drum Property Group’s ‘Red Sandstone’ building – now home to a range of exciting range of new shops, cafes and businesses. Known simply as The Red Sandstone, the building extends from 106 to 154 Leith Walk and provides a range of open-plan first floor business suites housed above a row of shops, cafes, restaurants and a popular bar and arts venue:
Red Sandstone Building

27 July 2023
Destination Hillend
Design: Smith Scott Mullan Associates
Destination Hillend, Edinburgh Pentland Hills
image courtesy of architects practice
Smith Scott Mullan Associates have submitted a planning application on behalf of Midlothian Council for Destination Hillend, a new landmark which will transform the existing Midlothian Snowsports Centre into a multi-activity national leisure destination on the Pentland Hills, overlooking Midlothian and Edinburgh:
Destination Hillend, Pentland Hills

26 July 2023

Home builders call out critical need for planning system improvement as shocking new statistics reveal 46% drop in number of applications for major housing developments

New planning application statistics have been described as “shocking” by sector body Homes for Scotland (HFS). The figures, published today, reveal a staggering 46 per cent drop in the volume of applications for major housing developments for 2022/23 compared to 2019/20. Despite this significant drop in the volume of applications, average decision times remain above pre-Covid levels at 39.3 weeks, nearly two and a half times the 16-week statutory timeframe for such applications.

The number of local housing development applications has also fallen by 12 per cent whilst processing times have risen nearly 40 per cent compared to 2019/20 and now stand at 17.2 weeks (more than double the eight-week statutory timeframe). This has particular impact on SME home builders and rural housing.

HFS Director of Planning Liz Hamilton said:
“In the context of Scotland’s housing crisis and the shortfall of 114,000 new homes that has accumulated since 2008, these shocking figures illustrate how much worse the situation is becoming.

“Scotland simply cannot afford, either socially or economically, to let this continue but issues with the new National Planning Framework 4 point to such an outcome.

“The Scottish Government must get Scotland’s planning system sorted if we are to ensure this and future generations are able to access safe and sustainable homes that meet their needs and they can afford.

“This requires significant investment in and resourcing of planning services. We also need a system that balances the housing crisis equally with those of climate and nature. We want to continue to work with Ministers and officials to achieve this, particularly in relation to filling any data gaps that exist so that policy decision-making is pragmatic and evidence-based.”

4 July 2023
New Show Home Opens at Rowanbank Gardens
Rowanbank Gardens Show Home
image courtesy of Artisan Real Estate
The new show home and marketing suite at Artisan Real Estate’s Rowanbank Gardens is now open, giving home buyers the opportunity to experience first-hand one of Edinburgh’s most anticipated new homes’ developments. Described as a ‘spectacular blueprint for low carbon living,’ Rowanbank Gardens is currently delivering 93 apartments for private sale on Gylemuir Road, in the popular Edinburgh suburb of Corstorphine:

Rowanbank Gardens Show Home

27 June 2023
Concern as decline in Scotland’s new homes starts continues
Latest Scottish Government housing statistics (released today) highlight major concern for the continuing fall in the number of new homes started across all sectors, which now stands at 25% below those started in the pre-pandemic year to end March 2020.

15 June 2023
Scotland’s first Passivhaus leisure development, Blairgowrie, Perth and Kinross
Design: Holmes Miller, Architects
Blairgowrie Recreation Centre Scotland building
image : Holmes Miller
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:
Blairgowrie Recreation Centre building news

15 June 2023
Construction industry getting set for transformation

Industry leaders from across Scotland’s public and private sectors have been appointed as co-chairs to develop ten core construction areas where transformation across the sector is needed most.

Their appointment follows the publication last year of the Scottish Construction Accord by the Construction Leadership Forum (CLF), which is aimed at creating more successful businesses, enhancing working conditions for employees, improving the quality of construction and becoming a net zero industry.
Central to reaching that goal are ten priority work areas where the co-chairs will now take responsibility to bring together industry and government experts to develop and drive forward a transformation action-plan.

That plan will cover areas such as improving the capacity, capability and diversity of the workforce, reforming construction procurement practices, increasing the use of digital technology across SME’s and optimising Scotland’s place in the modern methods of construction’s emerging market.
Once developed, the plan will be published on CLF’s website with the programme project-managed by Scottish Futures Trust.

The CLF’s Transformation Board of newly appointed co-chairs will meet regularly to realise collaborative ambition across the priority actions. The organisations they are from and the priority work areas they will focus on, are listed below:

Co-chair Organisation Priority Work Areas

Graham Porteous Scottish Government Procurement/supply chain management
Stuart Parker Morgan Sindall Procurement/supply chain management
Paul Dodd Scottish Futures Trust Pipeline
John Gunn Balfour Beatty Pipeline
Lewis Hedge Scottish Government Fair work
Fiona Harper SELECT Fair work
Colin Proctor Scottish Futures Trust Quality
Iain Kent Morgan Sindall Quality
Lynsey Brydson BE-ST Digital
John McKinney Build UK Digital
Stephen Good BE-ST Net Zero
Stewart MacLeod Faithful & Gould Net Zero
Gordon Nelson Federation of Master Builders Net Zero
David Littlejohn Perth & Kinross Council Supply chain development
John Brown Veitchi Flooring Supply chain development
Elaine Ellis Skills Development Scotland Workforce – skills
Emma Dickson Arcadis Workforce – skills
Stephanie Lowe Scottish and Northern Ireland Plumbing Employers’ Federation (SNIPEF) Workforce – skills
Ryan Cossar Scottish Futures Trust Modern Methods of Construction
Alex Goodfellow Donaldsons Modern Methods of Construction
Douglas Morrison BE-ST Data
John McKinney Build UK Data
Morag Angus Scottish Government Board Co-Chair
Peter Reekie Scottish Futures Trust Board Co-Chair

Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade, & Chair of CLF Richard Lochhead said: “Construction is an extremely important part of the Scottish economy. That is why we are engaging with industry through the Construction Leadership Forum and have formed a first-class team to allow the sector to thrive and contribute towards a wellbeing economy that is fair and prosperous for all.

“By working alongside public and private sector colleagues to codesign a Transformation Plan that will support the construction sector, the Scottish Government is listening to the challenges and looking to maximise future growth, as we strive towards the aims of our National Strategy for Economic Transformation.”

Peter Reekie, chief executive of public sector infrastructure specialists, the Scottish Futures Trust, and co-chair of the Transformation Board, said: “These appointments are pivotal to driving the collaborative approach that will deliver the transformation commitments for the industry.

“We recognise that change is needed and we can only deliver it by working together. We need to bring in new and diverse talent and ensure the whole workforce has the competencies to support the future of the industry and we need to build and maintain assets in different ways using different materials to deliver a net zero, carbon-built environment.”

Morag Angus, chief surveyor at Scottish Government and the Transformation Action-Plan Board co-chair, said: “Working inclusively with the best in the sector, using key knowledge and experience we will identity the optimum ways to achieve a thriving and sustainable construction sector in Scotland. The Scottish Construction Accord and this joint approach to continuous improvement is the first of its kind in the UK and we are excited by the potential.”

For more information visit www.constructionforum.scot

13 June 2023
JRA Chosen To Operate On BMA Scotland HQ
Design: John Robertson Architects (JRA)
Angela St Clair-Ford - British Medical Association HQ Edinburgh
image courtesy of architects
The Grade A-listed 14 Queen Street is a notable example of Scottish Georgian architecture, situated in Edinburgh’s UNESCO-protected New Town. The New Town World Heritage Site is characterised by a diverse portfolio of architecturally significant commercial and residential buildings including designs from John & Robert Adam and Sir William Chambers:
British Medical Association HQ Edinburgh

13 June 2023
Archive House, Bonnyrigg building for Historic Environment Scotland
Archive House Bonnyrigg for Historic Environment Scotland
image courtesy of Historic Environment Scotland (HES)
Archive House, an existing building in the Sherwood Industrial Estate in Bonnyrigg, will be converted to a world-class facility to house the organisation’s extensive records and archives, which give a unique insight in to over 5,000 years of Scotland’s history:
Archive House, Sherwood Industrial Estate, Bonnyrigg

13 June 2023
National Outcome for housing called for by home builders
Homes for Scotland (HFS), the representative body for the home building sector, has called on the Scottish Government to introduce a new National Outcome for housing if progress is to be made in providing enough homes for the people of Scotland. National Outcomes are part of the National Performance Framework, describing what “living well together” means:
Scottish Architecture News

29 May 2023
ONE BioHub Aberdeen, by BDP
The £40 million ONE BioHub is the iconic new location for life sciences in Aberdeen. Inspiring ambition, giving scientists and innovators skills and knowledge to turn research and innovation into businesses, and supporting them on the entrepreneurial journey.

29 May 2023
Homes For Scotland Celebrates Sustainability Wins At Annual Awards

With a focus on social, sustainable and environmental values, the winners of this year’s Homes for Scotland (HFS) awards have been announced.

The event, which was attended by 1,000 senior representatives from across the home building sector and hosted by political satirist and impressionist Rory Bremner, saw three of Scotland’s home builders take home the organisation’s coveted headline Home Builder of the Year awards, with winners in five additional categories focused on an overall “People, Place, Planet” theme also announced on the day.

Winners of the Homes for Scotland Awards 2023 were announced at the organisation’s Annual Lunch on Friday 26 May at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

The independent judging panel comprised:

– David Knight (Chair) – Former MD, Avant Homes
– Johnny Cadell, Principal Architect & Designer, A+DS
– Sepideh Hajisoltani, 2023 Chair, Scottish Young Planners’ Network
– Emma Marriott, Director, Emma Marriott Consulting and Board member of Construction Scotland Innovation Centre – Built Environment Smarter Transformation
– Andy Mason, Head of Strategic Partnerships & Housing, Lloyds Banking Group
– Scott Peterkin, Partner, Burness Paull
– Sarah Stanger, Former Sales & Marketing Director, CALA Homes (East)
– Carrie Thomson, Head of Development Planning & Housing, Scottish Government

18 May 2023
City of Edinburgh Council and West Town Edinburgh Ltd Agree Joint Approach for the Sustainable Expansion of Edinburgh
West Town Edinburgh 20-minute neighbourhood
image courtesy of West Town Edinburgh Ltd
West Town Edinburgh 20-minute neighbourhood
West Town Edinburgh Ltd, the development consortium which owns more than 200 acres of prime development land to the west of Edinburgh, has agreed a joint approach with the City of Edinburgh Council to deliver a major new ’20-minute neighbourhood’ for the city. Both parties have agreed a ‘Memorandum of Understanding’ which sets out how they will work closely together to prepare a delivery strategy for the sustainable expansion of Edinburgh at the West Town site.

15 May 2023
Edinburgh’s next net zero carbon affordable housing project
Greendykes net zero affordable housing
image courtesy of EHDP
The Edinburgh Home Demonstrator (EHD) explores an innovative approach to design, procurement, and delivery of affordable net zero carbon homes. Planning permission has been granted for EHD’s second pilot project in Greendykes, delivery of which will be led by Urban Union and supported by Donaldson Timber Systems and Robertson Timber Engineering:
Edinburgh Home Demonstrator Project

28 Apr 2023
The Sky is the Limit for Double Height Apartments at Rowanbank Gardens
Rowanbank Gardens Double Height Apartment interior
image courtesy of Artisan Real Estate
Rowanbank Gardens Edinburgh Property
A row of double-height apartments at Artisan Real Estate’s acclaimed Rowanbank Gardens homes development in Corstorphine, Edinburgh is proving a high-flying success with buyers.

25 April 2023
Plans submitted for short term let apartments in Edinburgh’s Broughton Market
1 Broughton Market short term let apartments, Edinburgh
image courtesy of architects practice
Northumberland Street Properties (North) has submitted plans for the conversion and extension of No. 1 Broughton Market, from office use to short term let accommodation. Building on a strong track record in the delivery of high quality and characterful short term let accommodation, the conversion of this standalone property provides an attractive addition to North’s portfolio in the further expansion of their offer in this sector:
1 Broughton Market short term let apartments

31 March 2023
Scotland’s housing deficit growing as drop in the new homes starts continues
The latest Scottish Government housing statistics (released today) reveal the drop in the number of new homes that are being started to be built across all sectors is continuing to grow, with a 12 per cent decrease in the year to end September 2022 compared to the previous 12 months:

22 March 2023
Scottish Home Builders News

Home building sector body Homes for Scotland has welcomed the appointment of its Chief Executive Jane Wood to the Scottish Government’s Housing to 2040 Strategic Board.

2 March 2023

Ica Studio wins Architectural Excellence Award at the 2023 Scottish Property Awards for Virgin Hotels Edinburgh

Ica Studio Edinburgh

Edinburgh, March 2023 – Ica Studio, an architecture and interior design studio regarded as one of the world’s leading hotel architecture and design practices has won the Architectural Excellence Award at the 2023 Scottish Property Awards, for its India Buildings project, now home to Virgin Hotels Edinburgh.

“A project like this has a long road to travel from concept to completion, and it involved the talent and dedication of many incredible people. This award is a testament to the power of teamwork, strength of vision and the importance of never giving up!”

Sussanah Macneill, Managing Director, Ica Studio

The Scottish Property Awards is an independent competition which honours the achievements in the real estate sector. The best new public and commercial buildings in Scotland have been revealed at the property industry’s largest awards celebration held in Edinburgh last week in front of 650 guests at the EICC.

At the heart of Edinburgh’s Old Town and a UNESCO World Heritage site, the first Virgin Hotel outside the USA has recently opened in the oldest part of Scotland’s capital.

In an area of the capital renowned for its varied topography, picturesque medieval streets, closes and wynds and diverse architectural character, Ica Studio’s challenge was to combine the restoration of three distinctly separate ‘at risk’ listed buildings, which occupy dramatically different levels within the local cityscape, with new build elements carefully considered, to re-establish the historic form of the site, whilst also showcasing a bold, contemporary Edinburgh.

The Ica Studio team’s heritage know-how combined with their creative talent and world-leading hospitality expertise led to a design that was able to unlock the viability of this challenging city-centre site.

Ica Studio’s design allows for the three listed buildings to be linked both to each other and to the new build part of the hotel with sympathetic yet modern interventions, creating a new flow through the complex site and deliberately framing unexpected views out into both the more intimate bustling local streets and closes and towards the grander views of Edinburgh Castle and the Old Town roofscape. The design also provides for dramatic public spaces, rooftop gardens and cosy bedrooms, creating a bold contrast between old and new, light and dark, modern and traditional.

In working with existing buildings, every project has inherent quirks and challenges. However, the key to a successful refurbishment is careful planning, creativity, and lateral thinking. Ica Studio have mastered the art of ‘expecting the unexpected’ and the team is adept at designing a well-executed historic development, combining the existing elements of unique properties with the perks and privileges of a contemporary luxury hotel.

For the team at Ica Studio, which is celebrating its 20th birthday this year, the new Virgin Hotels Edinburgh is the outstanding result of many years of specialised experience, a lot of hidden hard work in both design and technical expertise to de-risk and make the project viable, conceptual talent, a love of hospitality and a flair for problem-solving.

About Ica – Hospitality, Architecture & Interiors:
Ica is an architecture and interior design studio creating welcome change around the world. Established in 2003, Ica is regarded as one of the world’s leading hotel architecture and design practices. A team of architects and interior designers collaborate to bring the very best ideas to clients all around the world — from the Caribbean to Clapham.

23 Feb 2023
Scottish Design Awards 2023 Entry News
For the 26th edition the early bird rates available until March 10.
The final submission deadline is on March 31.
To enter, please log into your account and submit your projects via the Scottish Design Awards website.
Read more at the Scottish Design Awards page.

15 Feb 2023
Scottish Design Awards Jury
Scottish Design Awards 2023 Glasgow 2022
The 2023 judging panel for the Scottish Design Awards is now revealed, showcasing a breadth of talent drawn from across the architecture and design professions. The dozen-strong line-up includes figures drawn from the construction and marketing sectors from the agency world to practices, client-side and academia.

9 Feb 2023
Drum Property Group Appoints New Construction Director

Ian Gracie Promoted to Key Position with Award Winning Developer

Ian Gracie Drum Property Group
image courtesy of architects practice

Drum Property Group has announced the promotion of Ian Gracie to the role of Construction Director. Gracie has been with Drum since 2019, leading and coordinating large design and construction teams across the company’s extensive portfolio, and has nearly 20 years’ experience working across the residential, commercial, leisure, retail and public sectors.

He takes over the role of Construction Director from Gordon Milne, who has moved to the newly created role of Technical Director for the Group. Welcoming Gracie’s promotion, Graeme Bone, Group Managing Director of Drum said: “Since joining Drum, Ian has proven himself a vital member of the team through the management and delivery of key projects during a uniquely challenging period for the industry. Ian’s promotion is a natural next step in his development and very well deserved – his track record and experience working within Drum will bring further depth to our senior management team.

Commenting on Gordon Milne’s new position within the company, Graeme Bone added: “Gordon’s new role also allows us to retain a highly experienced director within the business, providing technical and management oversight across all projects and maintaining consistency of delivery as we transition into our next cycle of development and expand our portfolio throughout the UK.”

Speaking of his promotion, Ian Gracie said: “Drum has always maintained a strong track record of growth and expansion, and I am pleased to now lead the talented delivery team for such an ambitious and dynamic developer. We have some significant projects to both complete, and in the pipeline, and I look forward to working closely with Graeme and the rest of the team at what is an exciting period of opportunity for the firm.”

4 Feb 2023
Major progress at Edinburgh’s flagship net zero carbon housing project

A major milestone has been reached on a flagship, net zero carbon housing development in Edinburgh as the first homes are now under construction.

Located on Waterfront Avenue in Granton, ‘Plot D1’ will comprise over 70 one, two, and three-bedroom apartments alongside several commercial units. The apartments will be rented as social housing owned and managed by The City of Edinburgh Council or to households on low to middle incomes at a ‘mid-market’ rate that is lower than private rental rates.

Granton affordable housing, Scottish Net Zero houses
image courtesy of The Edinburgh Home Demonstrator (EHD)

Edinburgh Home Demonstrator project

4 Feb 2023
2023 Scottish Design Awards
After 25 successful years The Scottish Design Awards return for 2023 with a showcase of boundless creativity from unsung maestros to industry heavyweights.
“It is great to be back with another edition of the Scottish Design Awards. I can’t wait to see what shocks, delights and surprises our entrants have in store for us.

Read more at the Scottish Design Awards page.

Edinburgh Building News 2023 – Winter

25 Jan 2023
Planning promotions at Homes for Scotland

Sector body Homes for Scotland (HFS), whose members deliver the majority of all homes built in Scotland, has announced the promotion of planning team members Liz Hamilton and Richard Lewington.

Liz becomes Director of Planning and Richard Principal Planning Adviser.

Commenting on the promotions, HFS Chief Executive Jane Wood said:
“I am delighted to recognise the hugely important contribution Liz and Richard have made since joining HFS in 2021, particularly in relation to the evolution of National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4) and in strengthening our relationships with stakeholders at both local and national levels.

“With 2023 set to be a year of transition as NPF4 is embedded and new style Local Development Plans begin to emerge, Liz and Richard will have vital roles to play in helping our members navigate the new system whilst monitoring its implementation in close dialogue with the Scottish Government and Local Authorities.

“The advantage of their previous development experience means both are acutely aware of, and fully understand, the challenges our members will face as they seek to deliver more of the homes that the people of Scotland need.”

23 Jan 2023
Fire near Jenners
Reports advise a fire near or at Edinburgh’s famous Jenners building. It appears to be in the building designed by Basil Spence on St Andrew Square. We will update here shortly:
Jenners

19 Jan 2023
Multi-Cultural Family Base Leith Building News
Designers: Ace Design Studio ; Consultant Interior Designer: Rachel Codd
Multi-Cultural Family Base in Leith, Edinburgh
image courtesy of architects practice
Following a period of quiet dilapidation, grassroots charity Multi-Cultural Family Base have had their activity spaces revitalised at a listed building in Leith, Edinburgh:
Multi-Cultural Family Base Leith Building

Edinburgh Building News 2022

Edinburgh Building News 2022

New design guide to transform Scotland’s approach to affordable housing
CCG - Granton D1 - Net Zero (credit TRACE)
image courtesy of TRACE
Edinburgh Home Demonstrator project

Stead’s Place Building Construction News
Stead’s Place Leith Walk Construction

Red Sandstone Building on Leith Walk
Red Sandstone Leith Walk development
image courtesy of architects practice
Red Sandstone Building on Leith Walk

Virgin Hotels Edinburgh Opens
Virgin Hotels Edinburgh Victoria Street oculus
photo : Virgin Hotels Edinburgh
Virgin Hotels Edinburgh Victoria Street

Usher building topping out celebration
Usher Building Edinburgh Bioquarter

BAM appointed to St James Quarter’s W Edinburgh
W Edinburgh St James Quarter Hotel
W Edinburgh Hotel at St James Quarter

£4 million to restore glasshouses at Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh
Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh Glasshouses Restoration

Residents and artists breathe new life into Edinburgh’s historic closes
Pirries Close Edinburgh Old Town
photo © Tom Duffin
Edinburgh World Heritage Twelve Closes Project

Rowanbank Gardens
Rowanbank Gardens Edinburgh housing design
property picture courtesy of Artisan Real Estate
Rowanbank Gardens Edinburgh Housing

Rosslyn Chapel Papers
Rosslyn Chapel collection Scotland
photo © Neil Hanna
Rosslyn Chapel

Comments for this Edinburgh Building News 2023 page are welcome.

Royal Scottish Academy Annual Exhibition
RSA Annual Exhibition

Edinburgh Architecture News 2021 – selection below:

Edinburgh City Plan: Capital Homes Shortage
Edinburgh City Plan

First Glimpse of Rowanbank Gardens in Corstorphine
Rowanbank Gardens Housing Edinburgh
Rowanbank Gardens Edinburgh Housing

West Town Vision
West Town Edinburgh property development site
image courtesy of architects practice
West Town Edinburgh Property Vision

Cammo Meadows by CALA Homes
Cammo Meadows by CALA Homes, Edinburgh
Cammo Meadows by CALA Homes News

More Edinburgh Building News 2023 online soon

Location: Edinburgh, Midlothian, southeast Scotland, UK

Edinburgh Architecture News Archive

Edinburgh Building News archive links below:
Edinburgh Building News 2020

Edinburgh Building News 2019

Edinburgh Building News 2018

Edinburgh Architecture News Jul – Dec 2017

Edinburgh Architecture News Apr-Jun 2017

Edinburgh Architecture News Jan-Mar 2017

Edinburgh News – Archive for July to October

Edinburgh Architecture News Mid 2016 – Archive for May to June

Edinburgh Architecture News Early 2016 – Archive for the early part of the year

Edinburgh Architecture News 2015 – Archive

Comments for the Edinburgh Building News 2023 page are welcome.