Old Town Fire Edinburgh, Building, Architect, Project, Images, Design, Info

Edinburgh Fire : Architecture

Southbridge & Cowgate : Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Old Town Fire

Old Town Fire Ideas Competition

Edinburgh Fire Ideas Competition winning submissions

Now this architecture competition is over this page will continue to grow as a resource

An exhibition ran at the Matthew Gallery, Chambers St until 11 Apr
then at the RIAS until 30 May
then at EWHT until Jul, all 2003

view from top of tenement on east side of south bridge 11.02.03
edinburgh fire
photo © Adrian Welch

View looking east down the Cowgate 25.01.03
Old Town Fire
photograph © Adrian Welch

Gilded Balloon arcade about to be hoarded up 10.01.03
old town fire
photo © dan frydman of inigo media

South Bridge Leisureland
Old Town Fire Edinburgh
image © Adrian Welch

All Photos below are unlinked, apologies:

old town fire
view south down blair st

fire, edinburgh demolition old town fire
details from blair st

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context of Niddry St South: runs parallel to East of South Bridge

old town fire Old Town Fire Edinburgh
east side of south bridge where it crosses the cowgate: south (left), north (right)

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view from south end of blair st to south-east: south bridge to top

old town fire
view from south end of blair st to south: kininmonth’s adam house top right

12-17.02.03 all photos above © khairul khalifah

old town fire
View looking east down the Cowgate 25.01.03

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view west along cowgate, fire site to left

old town fire
view from south end of blair st to south: kininmonth‘s adam house top right

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view from south end of blair st to south-east: south bridge to top

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views from top of tenement on east side of south bridge

old town fire

view south along south bridge, fire site to right
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east side of south bridge where it crosses the cowgate: north (left), south (right)

11.02.03 all photos above © Adrian Welch

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25.01.03 © Adrian Welch

old town fire

Global Architecture Websites that listed this competition:

aleph (france) www.kubos.org
archioz (australia) www.archioz.com.au
archguide (belgium) www.nav.be
architectureroom (uk) www.thearchitectureroom.com
nextroom (austria) www.nextroom.at
arkitera (turkey) www.arkitera.com
arquired (mexico) www.arquired.com.mx
kvasir (norway) http://search.kvasir.no
todoarquitectura (spain, central & south america) www.todoarquitectura.com
soloarquitectura (latin america) www.soloarquitectura.com/noticias.html
arqchile (chile) www.arqchile.cl/concursos.htm
archijob (israel) www.archijob.com

old town fire
picture © Adrian Welch

southbridge.org.uk is an unofficial competition site for architects, design students and the public to suggest ways to use the site.

It will be open to anyone, wherever you are to submit your ideas.

To take part, visit the site, enter your name and email address and we’ll send out information on the competition rules and prizes!

International Competition by:
inigo media + www.edinburgharchitecture.co.uk

“Edinburgh is what Paris ought to be. Its magnificent architecture shifts from the lofty buildings of its medieval Old Town as they tumble down the spine of the Royal Mile Edinburghto the grace of the Georgian New Town“. Robert Louis Stevenson

“Social inequality is nowhere more ostentatious than at Edinburgh…to look over the South Bridge and see the Cowgate below full of crying hawkers, is to view one rank of society from another in the twinkling of an eye”. Robert Louis Stevenson

old town fire
picture © Adrian Welch

useful link

edinburgh fire: commentmany of the links may now malfunction so they have been left but ‘unlinked’
“The Cockburn Association has criticised building height restrictions imposed by city officials on the Cowgate site, which was devastated by the Old Town blaze in December.”


news story

“buildings destroyed in Edinburgh’s Old Town fire would be replaced with “simple, modern and contextual architecture enclosing a central square and incorporating historic closes”. Malcolm Fraser revealed his vision for the renewal of the site…and said he had no intention of building a “grand gesture” or a monument to the past…the replacement would involve both traditional stone masonry as well as more modern elements and glass to allow lots of light into the site.

The heart of the new development, which is expected to be the same height as its predecessor, will be defined by a central square, from which there will fan out a series of new closes and broad steps linking the site to the Cowgate and surrounding streets.

The replacement plans were revealed as Edinburgh City Council officially handed back the site to a development company formed by the owners of the Cowgate site…it also emerged that a prominent player in the development consortium, Edinburgh University, has yet to sign up, possibly hindering further progress…

Mr Fraser said he would like to see a series of artists’ studios on the site, as there was a lack of them in the city, and he hoped that much of the re-build could be completed in traditional stone, although the consortium was looking to the help of heritage trusts to assist with the cost of such materials…The architect also wants to restore a gable at the entrance to the Cowgate, which collapsed in the wake of the fire.

Martin Hulse, the director of the Cockburn Association, said: “It is fantastic that Malcolm Fraser is involved. The South Bridge elevation must be stone. South Bridge is down on its knees and this needs to be the catalyst”.
see May news

malcolm fraser

“Karen Koren will stage dozens of festival shows at two new Gilded Balloon venues just off the Cowgate – yards from where her offices and club once stood. “

Cowgate Brief
“Edinburgh’s Cowgate is to reopen to traffic on Monday for the first time since December’s devastating Old Town blaze – four weeks ahead of schedule…..Officials have been hosting workshops to thrash out the future of the site between owners of fire-hit properties, residents’ groups, conservation bodies and architecture experts. The council is to prepare a blueprint outlining principles for the restoration and future development of the site. The authority has declared that any planning applications for the site will “have to comply with the finalised brief”.”


Trondheim connection
The Trondheim fire was within wooden houses right in the heart of the city. None of them were listed, but some of them had architectural values of their own and all of them contributed of course to the general townscape as it was one of the few remaining blocks of wooden houses. The landowners have launched a architecture competition in which four companies have been shortlisted and are due to come up with final projects quite soon I think. Unfortunately all the written material on this is in Norwegian, and for some reason the newspaper that have most information on this have taken away the link to a slide show from the fire. But you can get a look at www.adressa.no/trondheim/bybrannen where several articles, and including some pictures are posted.
The final projects from the shortlisted companies in the architecture competition in Trondheim is now launched at www.adressa.no/bildegallerier
The article (in Norwegian) quotes one of the “traditionalists” who complains that the project is not in line with the existing cityscape, that nothing reminds him of the low wooden houses, that the buildings are too tall and the facades are too compact and