Seven architects shortlisted to design Edinburgh’s Ross Bandstand replacement

Image courtesy of David Springford of Infinity Photography
Image courtesy of David Springford of Infinity Photography

A shortlist has been drawn up to replace the Ross Bandstand in the heart of Edinburgh’s West Princes Street Gardens with a new landmark Pavilion amid worldwide interest from architects and designers.

Entries from 125 teams spanning 22 countries including Australia, Japan, India and the United States and made of 400 individual firms have been narrowed down to seven finalists by the Ross Development Trust in collaboration with the City of Edinburgh Council and Malcolm Reading Consultants.

UK-based practices produced 42 per cent of submissions.

Those proceeding to the second stage of the Ross Pavilion International Design Competition will now create concept designs for the new circa £25 million Pavilion.

Each of the finalist teams is led by an architect and are listed below:

The shortlisted teams

  • Adjaye Associates (UK) with Morgan McDonnell, BuroHappold, Turley, JLL, Arup, Plan A Consultants, Charcoalblue and Sandy Brown Associates
  • BIG Bjarke Ingels Group (Denmark) with jmarchitects, GROSS. MAX., WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff, Alan Baxter Associates, JLL, Speirs + Major, Charcoalblue and People Friendly Design
  • Flanagan Lawrence (UK) with Gillespies, Expedition Engineering, JLL, Arup and Alan Baxter Associates
  • Page \ Park Architects (UK) with West8, BuroHappold, Muir Smith Evans and Charcoalblue

  • Reiulf Ramstad Arkitekter (Norway) with GROSS. MAX., AECOM, Groves-Raines Architects and Charcoalblue
  • wHY (USA) with GRAS, Groves-Raines Architects, Arup, O Street, Creative Concern, Noel Kingsbury, Yann Kersalé Studio, Lawrence Barth, Stuco, Alan Cumming, Aaron Hicklin, Alison Watson, Peter Ross, Adrian Turpin and Beatrice Colin
  • William Matthews Associates (UK) and Sou Fujimoto Architects (Japan) with GROSS. MAX., BuroHappold, Purcell and Scott Hobbs

  • The news follows the appointment of writer Alexander McCall Smith CBE FRSE and architect Ada Yvars to the Trust’s design competition jury.

    Councillor Richard Lewis, culture convener and festivals champion for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “The response to the competition’s first stage affirms the worldwide interest in Edinburgh and its association with the arts. Scotland’s capital is renowned as the World’s Festival City and the home of culture - and designers clearly want to be part of its future.

    “The brief at stage two asks for a serious piece of architecture but one that’s also celebratory – it will be fascinating to see what concepts the teams produce.”

    Chairman of the Ross Development Trust and competition jury chair, Norman Springford, said: “We were absolutely delighted by the response of designers from around the world to the competition’s first stage. The quality of the 125 teams on the long list sent a strong signal that the international design community regards this as an inspirational project for Edinburgh that has huge potential to reinvigorate this prestigious site.

    “Selecting the shortlist with our partners from City of Edinburgh Council was an intense and demanding process. We’re thrilled that our final shortlist achieved a balance of both international and UK talent, emerging and established studios. Now the teams will have 11 weeks to do their concept designs – and we’re looking forward to seeing these and sharing them with the public.”

    Competition director Malcolm Reading added: “This is an exceptional project – the interest from the website audience and the number of enquiries we received was far out of the ordinary. We appreciated the care and hard work that had gone into the submissions – to those who are disappointed not to make the shortlist, take heart: overall, the standard was very strong.”

    The finalists will be invited to visit the site in April and will have until June to produce their concept designs.

    A public and digital exhibition will be held by the Ross Development Trust this summer to showcase their concept designs and to receive local feedback, with a winner expected to be confirmed in August 2017.

    Construction is expected to begin in 2018.

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