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Museum of Scotland
Keith Hunter Download Original
- Begun: Jan 1996
- Completed: Dec 1998
- Floor area: 12,800m2
- Sector: Arts and culture
- Total cost: £44.9M
- Tender date: Jun 1995
- Procurement: Scottish Management Contract (March 1988) based on JCT management contract 1987
- Address: Chambers Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1JF, United Kingdom
- Architect: Benson + Forsyth
- Project architects: Alan Forysth, Gordon Benson
- Client: Museum of Scotland
- Structural engineer: Anthony Hunt Associates
- Quantity surveyor: Davis Langdon
- Services engineer: Waterman Gore
- Project manager: Turner & Townsend Project Management
- Lighting consultant: Kevin Shaw
- Main contractor: Bovis Construction
Five-storey competition winning museum with gallery space for Scottish artifacts and artwork of historic importance. Constructed with an in-situ concrete frame clad with Clashach sandstone
Situated close to the spine of the old town, the museum uses the objects in its collection to tell the story of Scotland from geological beginnings to the present, arranged chronologically from basement to roof. The integration of object, display and architectural promenade and space is central to the design of the building.
The double-walled cylindrical entrance tower draws on the imagery of the prehistoric north British brochs. The facades to Chambers Street and George IV Bridge are clad in an expressed veneer of Clashach sandstone. Walls are punched and pulled with slots, colonnades and cantilevered windows.
Internally, a long, dark entrance hall leads to the triangular top-lit central court, with views upwards to tiers of galleries. Arranged around the central court, a series of rooms are separated by thick walls and criss-crossed by many slots and alignments of view.
As well as creating deep thresholds and controlled glimpses, the massive walls are designed to contain all the service runs. At first floor level a second great hall connects through to dozens of openings to small galleries all around. A convex roof with clerestorey windows holds the roof garden above.