Marina and Elina win AJ Student Prize by Craig Heap

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Congratulations to Holmes Miller Architectural Assistants Marina and Elina on the news that their Postgraduate work at University of Strathclyde has been recognised with the AJ Student Prize 2018.

One juror said: ‘[The project] demonstrates the power of creative collaboration and offers a refreshing departure from the starchitect-manufacturing pedagogies that are inclined to over-emphasise the importance of individual portfolio projects.

’Their scheme offers a sensitive and reserved approach to a well-renowned site. The proposed palette and programme reflect that of the scheme’s context, and the people-centred agenda responds to urgent concerns about the future of truly public buildings.’

Link to AJ article

Project Abstract 

Studying the interwoven states of time, memory and space in the context of a territorial realm, Glasgow city becomes an urban canvas, where hidden narratives begin to unfold. Investigating the origins of a place, under a wider frame of reference, aids in understanding the city’s spatial, cultural, political and social development over the past centuries, as well as identifying prominent features or events that got buried under the rapid pace of urbanization. This thesis is an attempt to generate a precedent for a local cultural forum, that triggers the sense of cultural belonging. The city transforms into a palimpsest where citizens perceive present as a collective experience by unravelling the city’s shared pasts while simultaneously generating vision for the city’s future prospects. The exploration of all three states of time as interwoven realities, is expressed through a series of civic structures that seek to empower collective identity through the trading of ideas and public consolidation.

Project Description

Situated in the heart of Glasgow, Synchroni[city] is an attempt to give form to a cultural quarter for the public . Occupying the site where once the College Good Yard stood its typological orientation conveys a restored interpretation to the function of the market, transforming it from the trade of goods to the exchange of ideas. With its emergence it seeks to revive a version of the classical Agora, a public place of concentrated cultural activity and social encounter.  

The quarter is  composed of three main structures, each one reflecting a temporal state of society – past, present and future – through the acts of recollection, reflection and public consolidation. The structure of remembrance, takes the form of an archive of the lost city, containing records of the city’s past that got lost as the city expanded. From physical elements (e.g. the Molendinar burn) to states of societal uprise (e.g. Red Clydeside, Suffragettes, trade and slavery) it restores the public memory of the city. The second object of study is a vessel of public reflection. The hall of hidden narratives rises as a mirror of the city’s terrain assembled in brick and exhibits the product of remembrance in tangible form. It is a symbol of materialization of expressive intuition in the form of public art. Proceeding to the final section the spatial sequence concludes with the peoples’ forum. It is a place for public deliberation taking the merged form of an auditorium and an arcade. A modern cathedral that enables social interaction through the stages of observation on the dialectics of present reality, debate and future contemplation. All the structures are connected through a central amphitheatre and signify the interwoven states of memory and social evolution. The synthesis itself was designed to form a precedent for a local quarter that would be situated in every county of Scotland, with the prospect of their interconnection, ensuing that social structure is established under a system that transcends from the citizen, to its local region, to the greater nation. 

Marina Konstantopoulou & Elina Giannoulaki

Education Estates Conference, Manchester by Craig Heap

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Following the successful delivery of Glenpark Early Years Centre, we have been invited to present at the Education Estates Conference in Manchester on 16 October 2018.

With increased commitment to provision of pre-school education and funded places for 3-5 year old children across the UK, local authorities are being challenged to develop flexible delivery models and create new facilities to meet this growing demand. Holmes Miller has developed a solution that brings all the benefits of off-site manufacture, to provide Councils with an ELC model that can be expanded to suit anticipated pupil rolls, and delivered efficiently, whilst aligning with challenging cost and area metrics. Referencing the recently completed Glenpark Early Years Centre, our Associate Director, Clara Garriga will discuss how these buildings can be crafted with innovation and creativity.

Link to conference event

Planning submitted at Kent Road by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller has submitted a planning application for a residential development at Kent Road on behalf of Kelvin Properties.  The development offers 20 units for private sale on a tight urban site adjacent to Charing Cross.

Accelerating Offsite Construction in Scotland by Craig Heap

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Ryan Holmes, Holmes Miller Associate Director, will be presenting at the Supply Chain Sustainability School Breakfast Briefing on Friday 7th September alongside Angeline Robertson, HubWS, and David Crawford, CCG OSM, to give a Client's perspective on Offsite Construction.  

The presentation will look at the development of a solution for the Early Years expansion programme that brings all the benefits of off-site manufacture, to provide Councils with a flexible solution that can be expanded to suit anticipated pupil rolls, and delivered efficiently, whilst aligning with expected cost metrics. This option can be customised to suit context, with a range of cladding solutions possible, and the large volume playrooms can be easily defined to marry with an early year’s curriculum.

Link to event details

 

Planning permission granted for Meadowbank Sports Centre by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller are architects and Design Team leaders for the project to redevelop Meadowbank Sports Centre in Edinburgh. We are therefore delighted that The City of Edinburgh Council recently granted Planning Permission for this prestigious project.

Holmes Miller Project Director, Gareth Yule said – “This is a significant milestone in the redevelopment of Meadowbank and we are looking forward to working with The City of Edinburgh Council and Edinburgh Leisure to deliver this great new facility, which we hope will be completed by 2020.”

With the retention of the existing running track, the design celebrates the history of Meadowbank and the legacy of sporting achievement witnessed at events like the Commonwealth Games held in 1970 and 1986 as well as other many memorable moments in the history of Scottish Athletics. 

 

New visitor centre for Drumpellier Country Park by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller has submitted a planning application on behalf of North Lanarkshire Council to extend the existing visitor centre at Drumpellier Country Park in Coatbridge. The centre is to be redeveloped as a gateway to the Seven Lochs Wetland Park, a new heritage and nature park spanning the Glasgow City and North Lanarkshire Council boundary between Easterhouse, Coatbridge and Stepps. The extension creates a new viewing area over Lochend Loch, with displays telling the story of the park and the Seven Lochs project. Construction work at the visitor centre is expected to start in the Autumn.

Balloch Shared Campus by Craig Heap

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Balloch Shared Campus amalgamates three existing schools into a single facility for West Dunbartonshire Council. The dual faith facility provides for 747 pupils with an additional support needs base and Early Years area.

The open plan nature of Balloch provides for 21 flexible spaces, supporting an ethos of independent learning.  Multifaceted environments encourage agile and collaborative working where lessons take place in larger resource spaces, children can take ownership of their studies, utilising the school's ‘nooks and crannies’.

The adaptable design reflects the operational needs of a modern teaching facility where varied environments encourage children to form bonds across year groups.

The design beautifully illustrates the transition of a child through the school, mirroring the journey each student has taken from junior to senior.

Strong links exist between indoor and outdoor spaces, with classrooms linked to 'growing laboratories’, bug hotels and recycled bottle greenhouses. These, along with the addition of conservation bat bricks allow students to consider their wider environment emphasising local sustainable and ecological topics.

Balloch Shared Campus was delivered by Morgan Sindall for West Dunbartonshire Council.

Government review safe standing at football matches by Craig Heap

 Photo by Robin Buchanan

Photo by Robin Buchanan

Following a parliamentary debate earlier in the week, the Government will commission a fundamental review of standing at football matches in the English Premier League and Championship.

All-seater stadiums have been mandatory in these leagues since 1994, after standing was banned by an amendment to the Football Spectators' Act 1989, following recommendations made in the Taylor Report into the Hillsborough disaster, which claimed the lives of 96 Liverpool fans.

However, surveys of supporters have shown that there is support amongst fans for the introduction of standing areas and Sports minister Tracey Crouch says her "mind is open" on safe standing at football grounds after announcing a fresh review into the subject.

The MP, speaking at Monday's parliamentary debate on the issue, expects findings of the initial research to be completed before the end of the year.

"Today I can announce we will commission an external analysis of evidence relating to the all-seater policy," said Crouch

"The one thing we need to do is collect and analyse the evidence that exists and ensure that all views on this issue can be heard and considered before we make any changes to the all-seater policy.

"Change cannot and should not happen overnight on something as serious as football ground safety. My mind is open on the future of the all-seater policy."

In Scotland, The Scottish Premier League had previously made it a condition of membership that clubs had to have all-seated grounds. This requirement was relaxed in 2011.

Following this, standing was re-introduced to the Scottish Premiership at Celtic Park, Glasgow.

Holmes Miller and engineers Blyth & Blyth were instrumental in the design of the safe standing area at Celtic Park for Celtic Football Club which was completed for the start of the 2016/17 season.

Celtic Chief Executive, Peter Lawwell said:

“The introduction of rail seating at Celtic Park represents an investment in spectator safety. Across football globally, the reality is that some supporters are choosing to stand at matches.

"This is something we must accept and manage and also understand the positive effect which these areas have on atmosphere at matches.

“Celtic’s primary objective will always be the safety and comfort of its supporters – this new system will now allow fans to stand safely at matches.

Installation video shot by Celtic FC Media Team

A case study on the installation at Celtic Park

 

Official opening of Baldragon Academy by Ryan Holmes

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Holmes Miller was delighted to share in the opening celebrations for the new Baldragon Academy, Dundee earlier today.  Formally opened by Deputy First Minister and Cabinet Secretary for Education and Skills, Mr John Swinney, we were entertained during proceedings by the Academy's Vocal Group and Wind Band who were the star attraction for the day.

Baldragon Academy is a 1100 pupil place community school, designed and delivered in close collaboration with Dundee City Council Capital Projects, Robertson Construction - Tayside, HUB East Central and Scottish Futures Trust.

Ryan Holmes, Project Architect,  “Following five years investment in the project, it was great to witness first hand, the real sense of ownership and enjoyment the staff and pupils have in the new facility”

Holmes Miller's wish for the new school is that it can provide a platform, in whatever small way, whereby all users can fully fulfil their academic ambitions and personal development.

On a personal note, can we share in wishing a long and prosperous retirement to the outgoing Head Teacher, Mr Kenny Hearn.

St Nicholas' Primary School achieves Practical Completion by Craig Heap

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Happy to report that St Nicholas’ Primary School (formally St Andrew’s / St Joseph’s) was handed over to East Dunbartonshire Council last Friday, a week ahead of schedule!  The project was delivered through hub West Scotland by Morgan Sindall. 

Well done to everyone involved, particularly our Project Architect, Jenna Campbell, who was understandably delighted with the end product.

What’s your favourite World Cup 2018 Venue? by Craig Heap

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Stadium design is one of our key sectors at Holmes Miller and it is with great excitement that we look forward to seeing the beautiful game played out at some fantastic venues at the World Cup in Russia which starts less than a week away on 14 June 2018.

The BBC has prepared a wonderful guide (Link to guide) to all the venues including information on capacity, location, background and a helpful fixture list.

Holmes Miller has been involved in many football stadium projects in the UK and abroad, including English Premier League at The King Power Stadium, Leicester, St Mary’s Stadium, Southampton and Old Trafford Stadium, Manchester and in the Scottish Premiership at Celtic Park and Ibrox Stadium in Glasgow.

At national level we have worked at the home venues of the England, Scotland and Northern Ireland international football teams at Wembley Stadium, Hampden Stadium and Windsor Park respectively.

We have also been involved in the design of stadiums outside the UK, for example The Arena by TransStadia in Ahmedabad, which is Asia’s biggest and India’s first convertible stadium and Ta' Qali, the National Stadium of Malta.

Our extensive work on the competition design for the Lusail Stadium Bowl, Doha for the Qatar World Cup 2022 has given us an appreciation of what is required for a stadium for the FIFA World Cup finals.

The opening match is held at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, which has a total seating capacity of 81,000 making it the largest football stadium in Russia and one of the largest stadiums in Europe.

England is the only home nation to have qualified for the finals and we will be following their progress with interest, starting with their match against Tunisia which will be held at the 45,500 capacity Volgograd Arena in Volgograd.

Highlights of the other 10 venues include the Kazan Arena in Kazan which is home to Russian Premier League team Rubin Kazan and has the largest outdoor screen in Europe, the Mordovia Arena in Saransk, Mordovia, where the stadium design is based on the image of the sun, the main symbol of ancient myths and legends of the Mordovian people, the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, Nizhny Novgorod which has what UEFA describes as a "semi-transparent undulating facade" and the Ekaterinburg Arena, Ekaterinburg where the temporary end stands have been constructed outside the main stadium!

We would be really keen to hear your thoughts on the stadium venues? Which is your favourite? Which one created the best atmosphere?

Enjoy the beautiful game in all its glory!

Holmes Miller submit Planning Application for the new Royal Highland Showground Pavilion by Craig Heap

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In January 2018 Holmes Miller was honoured to be selected by the Royal Highland and Agricultural Society of Scotland (RHASS) to design a new Multi Use Events Space for the Royal Highland Centre.

As one of the key venues of the Royal Highland Show the building will have an important role on the 4 days of the event – but Holmes Miller has designed with versatility in mind. RHASS see the building as a key player in Edinburgh’s events scene and its capacity of 350 covers over 1100m2 places it high up on the list of event spaces, for the remaining 361 days of the year.

The elevated single storey building will sit directly on the footprint of the original MacRobert Pavilion, commanding key views of the main ring and famous bridge from events halls. A large sub-divisible events space and bar area are supplemented by East and West generous entrance foyers, as well as a kitchen welfare areas. The high quality exterior palette will consist of high quality facing brick and pre-cast concrete feature panels carrying references to the provenance & history of the 1784 organisation. A covered terrace and landscaped informal seating areas will complete an external program designed to create a unique vantage point.

The team look to complete in time for the 2020 Royal Highland Show.

Planning submitted for old Lenzie Primary School by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller has submitted a Planning Application on behalf of Vaga Developments Limited for the restoration and adaptation of the old Lenzie Primary School building on Kirkintilloch Road, providing 20 flats specifically designed to appeal to the downsizing market in the town.

The existing building heights have been exploited to create two storey partial maisonettes over the two existing levels in the restored school, with the main living rooms retained as double height spaces.  The existing double height atrium space with extensive rooflight is to be retained and restored to provide communal access to the renovated flats.  A new extension provides nine additional flats, with full height glazing to all rooms, through a mix of French balustrades and balconies.

The extension is to be finished in a mix of natural stone to the main frontage and facing brick to the side and rear elevations, with high quality composite windows throughout.

London calling…. by Craig Heap

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Following fast in the footsteps of our flourishing Guangzhou (China) office opened in 2015, Holmes Miller was delighted to formally open our new office in Clerkenwell London on Wednesday 23rd of May 2018.

Operating out of London since late 2017, following a merger with an established practice, Holmes Miller has utilised the intervening 6 months to consolidate the merger, standardise our systems and cultivate a pipeline of projects in London and the South West with new and existing clients.

Sharing in the cultural and entertaining events happening during the ‘Clerkenwell Design Week’, the Practice utilised our new base in the heart of Clerkenwell to host a summer drinks reception with clients and consultants to formally open our new office. 

Whilst this is Holmes Miller's first formal London presence, we are no stranger to the city.  Holmes Miller delivered the OCS Stand at The Kia Oval, we were Technical Advisor (TA) on the iconic new Wembley Stadium and we enjoyed unlimited access to the London 2012 Olympics Velodrome and Copper Box, unfortunately this was during their construction as Lead TA and not as a flag waving supporter.

Holmes Miller Managing Director, Callum Houston said

“The opening of a London office is the realisation of a planned strategy linked to our long held vision and ambitions for the Practice.

I am delighted to have found a partner, through merger, who wished to share in the values and future of the Holmes Miller brand as we collectively strive to deliver excellence in design and service to our clients.

I am also delighted that our new London office will be led by Holmes Miller Director, Tim Gray who has jumped at the opportunity to relocate back to his old stomping grounds after enjoying the vagaries of the Scottish weather over the past 14 years.”

SAGA Cinema opens in Haining by Craig Heap

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The latest SAGA Cinema realised in Haining, 80 miles west of Shanghai and 40 miles east of Hangzhou. A city that serves the core of the Hangzhou economic wider circle and the greater Hangzhou Bay Rim area. Haining has been promoting development between traditional and new modern emerging industries. The city is known for its export of fish and rice as well as silk and leather. Furthermore Haining is a city with a rich cultural heritage and beautiful scenery.

The new SAGA Cinema modelled within a larger shopping centre brings some of the characteristics of export and industry into the interior design of the cinema. The cinema offers an interior that with its wide range of services such as meeting areas, café, lounges and parks, allowing the user to wonder and fully dive in the world of the Haining SAGA cinema experience.

The cinema takes its concept from the export containers used exporting the goods from Haining and these containers take centre stage as the entrance into each cinema screen. With over 10 screen rooms in a variety of sizes including a kid’s screen, the cinema accommodates all ages and genres.

A simple material palette of concrete, stone, brick and steel is complimented with soft lounge parks and bold colours within the screen rooms and throughout the interior spaces.

The design developed through a detailed consultation process between the Holmes Miller Interior teams in the UK and China, led by Nick Roemer. The close working between the teams allowed a detailed understanding of the vision and requirements of the services essential to this cinema. The final design was led on site by HMC Interior designer Maribel Cervantes Ochoa  who maintained direct contact with the Client and took the concept design to the next level, delivering a project with a refined attention to detail.

Pennywell All Care Centre officially opened by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller was delighted to see The Pennywell All Care Centre, one of three partnership centres that make up a £27.6 million programme delivered by NHS Lothian in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council and West Lothian Council, officially opened by the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport, Shona Robison.

The Health Secretary said: “It’s been great to get a chance to come along and see first-hand these new facilities that will make a huge difference to the people of North West Edinburgh.

“The Pennywell All Care Centre is truly an excellent example of health and social care services working together to provide the right services, in the right place, with patient care at the heart.”

The DBFM project was delivered by Graham Construction via hub South East.

Link to hub South East news item.

Inspiring the next generation by Craig Heap

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Holmes Miller was out in force today to support the hub West Scotland Careers Event at Turnbull High School in Bishopbriggs.  Rhiannon, Lina and James were providing valuable career advice and insight in the varying aspects of our work at Holmes Miller, including Architectural Services, Interior Design and Computer Generated Visualisation.

The kids were all armed with some tricky questions regarding 'how much money do you earn?' and 'what kind of car do you drive?'. 

'My other car is a Porsche' seemed to get the kids excited about a career in architecture!