Posted in Strathclyde

Edinburgh Site Ideas – preliminary

working through different layout ideas, I find sketchup pretty helpful.  Today, I take each spacial requirement and make boxes to define them.

cafe/bar/reception – @30-50 sqm  — Multipurpose space – @30-50sqm  —  staff areas – @ 10-15sqm  —  gallery – @120-150sqm

Because I want to keep the ruin walls intact and accessible to touch from the exterior, I begin by playing with these defined spaces by moving them around the site I have built, as well.  Deconstruction of space comes to mind and makes sense to me, as the site is surrounded by this former structure whose remains are left – it has been reduced to a shell and I want to take this idea and play with it.

Numerous boxes, suspended in space with light creating seams around the corners… Using various colors to define “zones”? I’m not sure if this will work since I don’t want to see this as a carnival, however I do like the idea of defining the corners of these suspended boxes.  I also love the idea of building the structure (out of whatever material – glass comes to mind quite a bit) only about .15m from the wall.  Far enough away from it to still see details from inside, but yet close enough to it to prevent walking along side at least one side of the building.. being able to see through to the north side of the property without accessing it.  Here is my model in process…

sketchup model

Posted in Strathclyde

Edinburgh Project – Additional measurements

Today I went back to Edinburgh to take some additional dimensions and pictures of the site I chose on the Grassmarket.  I found the extension of stairs that leads up the site and along the back of this gap site, too.  This extension leads right up to the castle making it quite a spot for tourists to make their way down to the grassmarket, which is great for my site purpose!  Here are my finds for today.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Posted in Strathclyde

Site Selection – Edinburgh Project

As previously mentioned, My final project will be designing a gallery space for Christo and I mapped out the four sites we had to choose from.  In the end, I chose the Gap Site in Grassmarket.  here are some notes and pictures I took of the site.

“The gap site is right on Grassmarket and to the left and back of it, there is a stairway that leads towards the castle and Johnston Terrace. Currently a garden for the neighborhing apartment building (circa 1984?), there are trees and a great open front space for gathering.  Grassmarket is a fairly popular area in the Southside with many pubs and shops and even a costume shop. There are at least two hotels in the area and this street has amazing views of Edinburgh Castle up the street. It has a very bohemian feel.  The existing stone walls could be incorporated into the design.  There could also be an entrance in the back on the upper level where the stairs go around the building as well as an entrance onto the Grassmarket.  This would be an interesting site to explore, however losing the  garden area would be a shame for the community.  There were two people walking around it when I got there.”



This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Posted in Strathclyde

Final Project Mapping – Edinburgh

For our final project in my Architecture studio at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, we are designing a public gallery based on our chosen artist from our previous project.  This section of the semester is called “To Settle” and I began my process of design by thinking about what it means to settle.

To Settle:  take up residence, become established in the area; form a community; to be stable in your life; become fixed and resolved – creating permanence.

The scope of the project is to create a small contemporary gallery for Christo, while keeping in mind that we are on a tight budget so being economical in costs is imperative.  There needs to be a good use of space and the design should consider sustainable practices.


*  reception – approximately 15 sqm with a staff of 2. (include office area/cafe here?)

*  Small public gallery – @ 120-150 sqm  Must have multi-function capabilities

* Multi-purpose space – @35-50 sqm. This is a flex space for temporary galleries, classroom for community (?) Needs storage/cupboards and much natural light.

* Cafe/Bar – @ 30-50 sqm.  This will be an additional source of income so it will be open longer hours than the gallery. (separate outside entrance?) Keeping in mind the need for food storage & washing up in addition to this space.  It may sell hot/cold drinks and snacks in lieu of having a full kitchen.

* Staff areas – @ 10-15 sqm for administrative activities, break rooms and artist space.  There will be no more than four staff employed.

* Public toilets – for both male and female. There is a ground floor fully accessible toilet that is required and these toilets need to acomodate up to 150 visitors per day.

Things to ponder:

. what scale should each space be?

. circulation of space? how do people move around?

. how do you treat thresholds? transitions of space?

. Is structure exposed or hidden?

. How much natural/artificial light and is it appropriate for gallery space and art work being displayed?

Explore sustainability and economic construction.  Look to successful models of gallery spaces.   there are no material constraints and it will be framed construction.


The class were given four sites in Edinburgh, Scotland to explore.  They are as followed with a quick sketch I did of each site:

Site#1 – 32 Cockburn Street (off of high street near the Royal Mile) building currently houses “Crew”

Site#1 "Crew"

Site#2 – 5 Hamilton Place in Stockbridge – building currently houses “Lancers” and backs onto a canal

Site#2 - "Lancers"

Site#3 – Betw. 92-94 Grassmarket – building named Mission Hall and currently appears to be vacant but there was a hotel there at one point.

Site#3 - "Mission Hill"

Site#4 – Gap Site on Grassmarket There is currently a wall ruin and an existing garden for the use of the adjoining apartments.

Site#4 - Gap Site
Posted in Strathclyde

Project One Final pin-up – Strathclyde

For this semester’s first project, we were required to design a studio/residence for an artist client of our choosing. I chose Christo and Jeanne-Claude. (the later is deceased, but Christo still includes her name on his projects) I have designed a project for them before in first year at UNCG, and I was interested to see how my design would be different, right from the onset.

We were given a specific site for this project – 82 High Street, North Berwick, Scotland and were told that we could only design the facade with brick and that the facade and style of the building shell were the only details we needed to be concerned with.  I began by doing a few freehand sketches of the street in all directions.  Here they are:

North West view of High Street
North East view of High Street
Southwest view on High Street from Thistle
Southeast view from Thistle on High Street

From here I went through a few different designs and they really morphed over time… Here are images to see how my design went through its metamorphosis.

First (right) and Second (left) designs
Rendition 3 - in context
Chosen Design - rendition 4

This chosen design provided a very small courtyard on the right side of the building and gave a bit of interest.  Here are some very quick elevations of what I did based on this design..

East/West Elevation
Front Elevation
Street elevations of adjoining buildings

I came up with my final design within two weeks of the final review for this project and being that I already had a few weeks less time than all of the other students (being my later enrollment and access to project details) I was less than pleased with my final output.  I was however commended for doing such a radical overhall of my design and that it was such an improvement and were excited about the addition of the courtyard.  I have another chance at the end of the semester where I will be submitting both this project and my final for review, so my goal is to revise and make stronger a few of my submissions.

One thing I am happy about is my ability to have access to the schools woodshop and laser cutter.  They have full time staff for both areas and I just drop off my project at the laser cutter guy and he gives me the final cut the following day.  It’s actually a great setup and would be something to think about, at least during project times at UNCG.  here are copies of my models..

This model was not "Tommy" proof and did not withhold up to a fall.
Just facade's of the adjoining buildings

There was an issue with Scale on my building model in relation to the adjoining buildings and that, too, will be fixed for the final presentation.  I’m just pleased that I was able to do this, as it was my first time setting up the file for the laser cutter.

Here are some of my other submissions on this project.

featured artists

Design in Context

concept and process