US firm wHY has been selected ahead of david adjaye, bjarke ingels, and sou fujimoto to complete a new building on a historically significant site in edinburgh, scotland. seven competing proposals were put forward for the ‘ross pavilion’, a new landmark structure commissioned to revitalize the city’s west princes street gardens. in addition to hosting arts and cultural programming, the £25 million ($33m USD) project will include a visitor center with a café as well as improvements to the surrounding gardens.
all images © wHY
wHY’s winning proposal was announced by the ross development trust together with edinburgh’s city council. the scheme places an emphasis on landscaping, with a design that, according to the judging panel, ‘brings new energies, opens up views, transforms access, and increases overall green space within west princes street gardens’. the project includes a new undulating promenade, improved access, and sculptural seating configured to suit a range of programs and events.
the visitor center and pavilion have been embedded into the folds of the landscape
in order to ensure that the castle remains the site’s primary visual event, the visitor center and the pavilion have been embedded into the folds of the landscape. ‘the ross pavilion and west princes street gardens represent this convergence and this was the perfect ground to further our approach to design,’ explains kulapat yantrasast, founder and creative director of wHY. ‘to be selected from so many extraordinary thinkers is an honor. we felt a personal connection to the gardens and believe our design embodies how important collaboration and people are to making a place remarkable.’
the project includes a new undulating promenade, improved access, and sculptural seating
‘we thoroughly enjoyed meeting all the shortlisted teams and understanding each approach,’ says norman springford, competition jury chair. ‘however with wHY, they demonstrated an impressive collaboration which respects and enhances the historical context and backdrop of the castle and the city, whilst creating new heritage and increasing the green space within the gardens. all of which were key aspects for us all and respected the importance of the space within a world heritage site.’
a scale model showing the site’s proximity to the castle
a key local partner in the winning collaboration was edinburgh-based design studio GRAS, known for its exploratory, interdisciplinary approach and an eclectic portfolio of arts, cultural and community-based projects. other firms involved in the winning design include: arup, studio yann kersalé, O street, stuco, creative concern, noel kingsbury, atelier ten, and lawrence barth. construction on the project is expected to begin in 2018.
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