Old Town Fire, Ideas Competition, Edinburgh Design Contest

Old Town Fire Edinburgh : Architecture

Old Town Fire Competition: Cowgate, Edinburgh, Scotland

post updated 22 October 2023

Edinburgh Old Town Fire

International Ideas Competition

old town fire

Winning Submissions

Architect Prize:

Old Town Fire Ideas Competition old town fire ideas competition Old Town Fire, Edinburgh
Ron Galloway Associates old town fire edinburgh fire old town fire

First: Ron Galloway Associates (above)

Arcade Architects old town fire ideas competition edinburgh fire old town

Second: Thomas Hamilton, Arcade Architects

edinburgh fire old town edinburgh fire competition

Third: Ed Hollis, Napier University

Student Prize:

Old Town Fire edinburgh fire

1st: Mark Marshall, University of Edinburgh

2nd: Jamie Ashmore, University of Edinburgh

3rd: Tom Holberton & Lucy Evans

Edinburgh Fire Comment

Judging @ Scottish Arts Club 10 Mar
Announcement @ Balmoral Hotel 11 Mar
Deadline for competition submissions 7 Mar

Edinburgh Old Town Fire

Edinburgh Old Town 2002 fire

In the evening of 7 December 2002, a fire started above the Belle Angele nightclub off the Cowgate. It swept up through the eight-storey structure to other buildings on Cowgate and above it on South Bridge.

The complicated nature of the buildings, with narrow alleys and entrances from the same building onto streets at different heights, complicated efforts to fight the fire, and was later called a “rabbit warren” by Lothian and Borders Fire Brigade. It took more than a day for the fire, fought at its height by 19 fire crews, to be brought under control, and several days for it to be completely extinguished. Around 150 people were forced to flee the flames, but thankfully there were no deaths.

The University of Edinburgh School of Informatics on South Bridge was badly damaged; the school was a pioneer in the study of artificial intelligence in the 1950s and one of the world’s most comprehensive archival libraries in this field was destroyed by the fire. Little current research data was lost in the fire due to offsite backups. In 2005 work began on a new building, the Informatics Forum, which was occupied mid-2008.

Also destroyed was the Gilded Balloon, a major venue for the Edinburgh Fringe, and offices for both the Gilded Balloon and Underbelly venues housed in an 1823 listed warehouse by Thomas Hamilton. The Gilded Balloon later moved to premises in Teviot Row House.

The site was temporarily used as a Fringe venue again when it became the C venues’ Urban Garden during the 2007 Edinburgh Festival.
source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowgate

Edinburgh Walking Tours

Edinburgh Old Town Building Designs

Contemporary Edinburgh Architectural Designs – recent selection from e-architect:

Old Town Buildings – Selection:

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Gladstone’s Land
Gladstone's Land
photo © Adrian Welch

Lady Stair’s House
Lady Stair's House
photo © Adrian Welch

Edinburgh Court Building
Edinburgh Court Building
photo © Adrian Welch

Old Town Canongate Housing

Dumbiedykes Housing

Edinburgh Restaurants

Comments / photos for the Edinburgh Old Town Fire Competition page welcome,