Contemporary Architectural Intervention
The work presented here shows the creative endevour of some architecture students from the Edinburgh College of Art and ESALA. The task was to review/reconfigure the Glasite Meeting House with particular emphasis on street presence and universal access.
The students were obliged to develop an attitude to its historic fabric, cultural context, physical characteristics and potential revenue sources. Euan Leitch, AHSS Forth & Borders Cases Panel Secretary, attended the project reviews and helped foster some lively debate.
Mark Cousins, ECA Tutor
The first six proposals were showcased in the Spring 2010 issue of the AHSS magazine; the remaining proposals will feature in the Autumn issue.
‘Commes des Garcons’ Store
This proposal decants the AHSS into nearby mews offices on Albany Lane and creates a new destination retail outlet. The addition of a ramp and lift improve access while rationalization of the ground floor, opens up the plan. A high-end and bespoke series of fashion retailers, specializing in ‘installation’ style displays would adopt each of the three spaces and the addition of large windows on the façade provide the street with framed views of the unique interiors.
The proposal seeks to transform the Meeting House into a multi-usable space for lectures, exhibitions, concerts and other events. Conceptually, the building is treated as having two very distinct parts; the conservative aspect of the Meeting Hall versus the radical which fronts onto Barony Street. Here, the corner of the original building has been removed and replaced with perforated copper panels creating a dialogue with a new roof extension, tension with the existing stonework and finally giving the building the street presence it deserves.
The Glasite is a discreet and modest building, which allows a glimpse into a Victorian past. The proposal focuses on introducing light to accentuate original features within, while providing the building with a heightened presence to the street. The intention is to encourage more people to enjoy the beautiful spaces this building has to offer.
The intent behind my intervention is to invigorate the Meeting House by identifying the historical uses of each internal space and reactivating them to a similar use. The main hall is a meeting and function room with the caretaker’s lodgings becoming lounge-like break-out spaces. Through the introduction of disabled access the feasting room becomes an attractive venue for functions. The rooftop office extension introduces the relatively new programmatic element of office space for the AHSS.
Through a process of investigative drawing and deconstructive thought, this proposal exposes hidden, non-linear layers of history that permeate old Broughton village. The final experience, originating from a notional ‘palimpsest’ is then realised through figural tracing; guided by fictional narrative.
In a play of openness and concealment, a permeable screen of rusting and stainless steel panels is used to mask new openings in the Glasite’s facade and a new, level entrance. A motif from the Meeting Room’s elaborate cupola is used to puncture the screen, animating light and views to and from the new entrance space.