The Grade A listed building, an iconic landmark in the city, will be turned into a world-class education centre of excellence for the University of Edinburgh.
The commission was secured through Scape Group’s National Asset Management, Surveying and Design Services framework and the project is, the largest to be facilitated through the framework. The major refurbishment and new build will be undertaken at the site which was vacated by the NHS in 2003, when the new Royal Infirmary was opened in Little France to the south of the city.
“This exciting project will not only address the requirements of the University but will have a much wider academic and commercial focus associated with areas including public policy, art, architecture and design, informatics, medicine and some areas of the humanities,” says Paul Sherry, director. “The new site will also serve as a hub for business in the city, where academics, practitioners and students meet meaningfully in an effective space, representing a step-change in the way in which business is thought about and worked with, both in the University and beyond it.”
Other than providing temporary offices for project teams working on the Quartermile development, the building, which is in a state of some disrepair internally with its fabric considerably eroded in places, particularly towards the rear, has been unoccupied since 2003.
“This exciting project will not only address the requirements of the University but will have a much wider academic and commercial focus..."
Paul Sherry, Faithful+Gould Director
Mark Robinson, Scape Group Chief Executive, said: “This incredible building has been at the heart of Edinburgh for more than three centuries, so we are thrilled to be playing a part in bringing it back into modern day use. Quartermile is one of the largest regeneration schemes in Scotland and through our framework, the University of Edinburgh will be able to offer further world-class facilities ensuring that they continue to attract some of the leading academics and business people of the future.”
Atkins has been appointed as Mechanical and Electrical Engineers on the project.
"Quartermile is one of the largest regeneration schemes in Scotland and through our framework, the University of Edinburgh will be able to offer further world-class facilities..."
Mark Robinson, Scape Group Chief Executive
The design of the building by architects Bennetts Associates will provide varied spaces for reflection, interaction and innovation. It will also offer a place for external organisations to engage in executive education, as well as providing space and opportunity to meet and work with some of the best minds in the University. Bennetts Associates has teamed up with architectural conservationists Consarc Design Group on the project.
With a strong sense of being part of an innovative venture within a University, rather than emulating the conventional style of the corporate world, the refurbished building will still facilitate, as a priority, the execution of the core functions of higher education including research and the development doctoral researchers.
Design work on the project will begin this month.