Neil McAllister's comments
Mark - It's lovely and sunny in Edinburgh just now!
If the RIBA isn't going to get involved in debates about public procurement you have to question their relevance to the profession. The only strange thing here is that they have taken so long.
If elections do not guarantee the relevant skills then why not just require those skills from those standing for election?
There's definitely something of Hassan Fathy about this. I like it a lot. So often these places are bulldozed and replaced with something faceless and anonymous and the community that was there is destroyed. It's good to see city authorities that have the interest in commissioning such a complex and well considered project.
Am I the only Luddite that sees nothing wrong with the current setup - grass, benches, statues and large enough hard areas for events - what more do you want?
I agree that the competition was a shambles and should never have happened that way but I'm not sure that a big expanse of grey stripes with a grey sky overhead is going to help.
Paul, it depends on your definition of success. This article clearly states in the first sentence that it is talking about "better architectural outcomes for clients and society".
However, if you are defining success as business success for the architect (which is a very important goal), competitions are the way that many practices become known or break into a new sector. It is otherwise virtually impossible to get work in a new sector as you are lacking in experience. For example in Richard Murphy's monogram you see that they on several occasions have entered competitions in a sector they have no experience in. As soon as they win one, other commissions come flowing in.
..."schemes backed by companies outside Scotland make up nearly a fifth of the £38 billion of construction contracts in the pipeline."
"...the lion’s share of planned works being funded by non-Scottish businesses..."
Which is it - "nearly a fifth" or "the lion's share" - it can't be both!