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PFI Procurement, Scotland : Public Finance Initiative
PFI Procurement : Policy on Architecture for Scotland
PFI Procurement Policy
PFI Scotland : Procurement
A Policy on Architecture for Scotland is a valuable contribution to the task of raising the standard of architecture in the country. One of the key objectives contained in this document is ‘to promote a culture of quality in the procurement of publicly funded buildings that embrace good design as a means of achieving value for money and sustainable development’. It appears to me that the area where we can have the greatest impact on the quality of new build is when a public body is client.
South of the border the CABE are playing a major role to help public bodies towards improved performance as a client, so that public buildings become beacons of design quality. CABE has had extensive and constructive discussions with a range of Government departments and agencies and plays a leading role in the Prime Minister’s Better Public Buildings initiative. Such an awards scheme was also envisaged for Scotland in the Policy on Architecture and it may be that the Royal Fine Art Commission should play a major role in its formation.
In Edinburgh a great deal of discussion is being undertaken by the City Council about how they can revolutionise their procurement process. The failure of which has been most evident in their new schools initiative. A working group headed by Cllr Trevor Davies and containing individuals such as David Page and Alan Murray is currently undertaking a great deal of work. There is also a new Strategy being produced by the Culture and Leisure Department on Visual Arts and Crafts, which will hopefully give a prominent role to Architecture.
However, while all this continues there a number of key developments that need to be examined. These include the new City Council Headquarter’s by BDP on Waverley Station Car Park, the extension to the Usher Hall on Lothian Road by LDN, the design of the new office block at Haymarket by Reiach and Hall, the extension to the Conference Centre (undisclosed) and Waverley Station again by BDP. Are these meeting the aspirations being promoted by the Scottish Executive? They have certainly not met with approval from RFAC’s.
picture © Keith Hunter
photograph © Adrian Welch
Private Finance Initiative Schools, Scotland
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picture from the architect
picture © Keith Hunter
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