Competition winning design for East Market Street Arches, Edinburgh

Research output: Other contribution

Abstract / Description of output

The aim of the proposal is to provide a subtle mix of high quality, innovative
consumption function (e.g. shops, galleries, street theatre) and also a high
quality, original production function (artisan production), for local people and
visitors alike. We have a vision of flexible premises that can spill out onto the
streets when appropriate (sun, festival) and take people into and through at other
times (evening, wet). There is also a need to differentiate from the more
traditional souvenirs on offer in the established Royal Mile outlets.
To enclose the 18 arches Zone Architects propose a layered timber screen which
will be a carefully designed collage of elements which will allow occupiers the
possibility of comfortable retreating to work or extension out on to the pavement
to display or sell.
As the first in a series of billboard displays, translucent digital images will be
printed on to the glass with a series of anamorphic projections of the monuments
of Edinburgh’s Calton Hill opposite the arches. Internally the arches are treated
as a series of found rock openings which will be swept out and smoothed inside
like oyster shells. Materials selected refer to the network of artisans’ workshops
which existing in closes crossing the site before the arches were built in the
1850s.
The arches support Jeffrey Street which was built over a newtwork of small closes
as part of a series of ‘improvement’ measures to open up the Old Town,
particularly to the north. They have since been used by the City Council for
storage although latterly they have largely been empty.
Original languageEnglish
Media of outputdesign project/ competition
Publication statusPublished - 2006

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