Electricity reinforcement scheme named Scottish Project of the Year at RICS awards

The £1.1 billion Caithness-Moray transmission link was named the overall Scotland Project of the Year

Over 25 of Scotland’s most impressive and community beneficial building projects battled it out for top honours at the 2018 RICS awards, where the Caithness-Moray electricity network reinforcement took the overall Project of the YearScotland title.

Held at The Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh yesterday, the annual RICS Awards 2018, Scotland celebrate inspirational initiatives in the land, property and construction sectors across eight category awards.

The highly acclaimed Scotland Project of the Year accolade is presented to the category winner that demonstrates overall outstanding best practice and an exemplary commitment to adding value to its local area.

The project also took home the Infrastructure category award

The project, which has energized the initial section of the £1.1 billion Caithness-Moray transmission link, won the Infrastructure category award before being named the overall Scotland Project of the Year.

Head judge of the RICS Awards in Scotland, Colin Smith MRICS, said: “The network reinforcement highlights the importance of a long-term investment commitment to energy production and its transmission from the connection of remote wind farms in Caithness along the sea bed to the north-east corner of Scotland.

“This highly technical project required a significant degree of logistical planning, project management, safety procedures and engagement with the local community. This project is a leading exemplar for the need and benefits of investing in Scotland’s infrastructure.”

Commercial category award winner ScottishPower House in Glasgow

Other category winners include ScottishPower House, Glasgow, in the Commercial category, Marischal Square, Aberdeen, which took the accolade for Regeneration, and Countesswells, Aberdeen, taking the award for the Residential category.

The ScottishPower project saw consolidation of 1,650 staff from several different ScottishPower operating businesses into its new headquarters, an impressive achievement alone, but the design strategy and procurement route used to deliver the building proved equally impressive to the judging panel.

Colin Smith said: “The design of the building was fully tested pre-construction and the city centre location drove the need to develop innovative off-site manufacturing processes that minimised material storage and deliveries whilst accelerating construction.”

The Residential category was won by the Countesswells project in Aberdeen

Countesswells won the Residential category, providing an example of a large-scale housing development being funded by innovative means utilising a UK Treasury guarantee that has allowed certainty and confidence to invest in a significant amount of up-front infrastructure and environmental works.

Director of RICS in Scotland, Gail Hunter, said: “Residents in Countesswells are taking ownership of completed spaces by becoming members of the management company responsible for maintaining new public spaces and allowing them to own and control the land’s future use.”

Colin Smith added: “The regeneration of Marischal Square is transformational for Aberdeen City Centre.  It has reversed the negative impacts of the building it replaced and delivered a mixed-use development that has enhanced the setting of two of the city’s most important heritage assets.

“The significance of the new office space is heightened by its Aberdeen context, where such development has in recent decades been lost to the urban fringe. Marischal Square will help Aberdeen City Centre to capture the benefits of the economic success of the city region.”

Aberdeen’s Marischal Square was awarded the prize for Regeneration

6 St Andrew Square, Edinburgh, was also Highly Commended within the Commercial category. Other category winners include Appleton Tower, Edinburgh, in the Design through Innovation category, Falls of Shin, Lairg, which took the accolade for Tourism & Leisure.

Gail Hunter said: “I would like to congratulate all winners of the RICS Awards, and the high quality of projects shortlisted, demonstrating the calibre of built environment work taking place across Scotland. The winners showcase schemes, from billion pound investments to locally funded community projects, all of which have a positive impact on their region and wider economy.”

All category winners will go on to compete against regional winners from across the UK at the national RICS Awards Grand Final on 2 November 2018 in London, for the chance to be crowned the overall UK winner in their respective category.

RICS Awards 2018, Scotland – Winners

Building Conservation

Winner – St. Cecilia’s Hall, Edinburgh


Winner - ScottishPower House, Glasgow

Community Benefit

Winner - Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries, Dunfermline

Design through Innovation

Winner - Appleton Tower, Edinburgh


Winner - Caithness-Moray Electricity Network Reinforcement


Winner – Marischal Square, Aberdeen


Winner - Countesswells, Aberdeen

Tourism & Leisure

Winner - Falls of Shin, Lairg 

Project of the Year

Winner – Caithness-Moray Electricity Network Reinforcement