Oliver Chapman leads plans for Falkirk canal community hub

Plans have been submitted by Oliver Chapman Architects for a new canal community hub in Falkirk.

The proposals for Lock 16 will see the former Barrs Irn-Bru factory building transformed into a new workshop, offices and training facilities for Scottish Canals and its partnering organisations.

The three interconnected steel portal frame sheds will be refurbished to form a large open plan volume with office space to the front.

Oliver Chapman said the site will be opened up to the local community and visitors both through providing new amenities and employment opportunities and by physically improving the permeability of the site and the transparency of the building fabric.

In a supporting statement the architects wrote: “The impressive roof structure and abundance of light in the central shed makes it an ideal space to house the main entrance lobby for the building as well as an open plan third party space.

“The smallest shed will house the public functions; the classrooms, records store and visitor facilities as well a five smaller third party units for let.

“All of the rooms that are required to be heated will be located in one of the three insulated structures constructed within the external envelope. The envelope itself will not be insulated to avoid the need to heat the large volumes within the sheds, making the building more energy efficient.”

A separate garage structure will be transformed into an ‘activities hub’ under the plans.

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