Wester Hailes Community Centre, WHALE Edinburgh Arts Centre, Zoo Architects

Wester Hailes Community Centre, Edinburgh

Whale Edinburgh, Scotland design by Zoo Architects, Scotland

Wester Hailes Community Centre: WHALE

Design: Zoo Architects

Location: Westburn Grove

wester hailes whale Wester Hailes Community Centre
Wester Hailes Community Centre: image from Zoo Architects

Wester Hailes Building

Provides exhibition space, workshop, teaching dark room, social area, performance area, crèche and offices.

Zoo Architects : Whale

The project provides a permanent purpose built community Arts Centre for Wester Hailes Art Leisure and Education (WHALE). The final design was developed over a 5 year consultation period with the client, user’s and disability advisers.

The building provides a variety of flexible spaces including an exhibition space, workshop, teaching dark room, social area, performance area, crèche and offices. Consideration of the environmental impact of the building was an integral part of the design process. The design incorporates a ”green” roof, uses recycled newspaper for insulation, under floor heating and reclaimed timber flooring.

Edinburgh Zoo Architects
Wester Hailes Community Centre: model image from Zoo Architects

The orientation has been organised to maximise the natural lighting and passive solar gain utilising glazed vertical and horizontal surfaces. The WHALE Learning Centre has been designed to be flexible and robust, which will provides a much needed focus for community arts in Wester Hailes. This will enable the client to expand their award winning programme and offer the opportunity to encourage new participation. Funding was secured via the Scottish Arts Council Lottery Fund, Edinburgh City Council and LEEL.

Wester Hailes – Building Information

Client: Wester Hailes Art Leisure and Education
Location: Westburn Grove, Wester Hailes, west Edinburgh
Contract Value: £750k
Contractor: Peter Walker Construction Limited
Date Completed: Oct 2000
Project Team: Peter Richardson
Project Architect: Alan Pert, Gary Johnson, Robin Lee

Zoo Architects WHALE information 2002

Also in Wester Hailes: Westburn

Wester Hailes Edinburgh

Background on Wester Hailes
Wester Hailes is a large zone of public housing in south-west Edinburgh. Like other peripheral modern estates – Craigmillar, Pilton / Granton, it was built in the sixties and over time has developed social problems. We understand that many of the people in Wester Hailes were moved from inner city housing in the Leith area.

Thus families became disconnected and many Leithers with family in Wester Hailes complain about the arduous public transport connection to the estate. At the end of the 20th century the estate had an injection fo funds and new social buildings such as an Odeon. Latterly the Union Canal has been restored and this is a green route accessible to residents in the Wester Hailes area.

Edinburgh Architecture

Edinburgh Walking Tours

Other projects by Zoo Architects include the Tramway Theatre in Glasgow and the North Edinburgh Arts Centre in Muirhouse

ZM Architecture was formed at the end of 2004: Zoo Architects Ltd with McGurn Architects

Edinburgh Housing

Leith Western Harbour

Comments / photos for the Wester Hailes Building design by Zoo Architects page welcome