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Bennetts wins Edinburgh Uni job

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Bennetts Associates has won the competition to design a new hub building at the University of Edinburgh

The practice’s scheme will convert the Grade A-listed Old Royal Infirmary in Edinburgh’s Lauriston Place into a hub for business, policy and society.

Bennetts is working with conservation specialist Consarc and project manager Faithful + Gould on the job which forms part of the Foster + Partners-designed Quartermile masterplan.

The 1879 hospital building, which was designed by David Bryce, has been empty since Edinburgh Royal Infirmary moved to a new site to the south of the city in 2003.

Rab Bennetts, founding director at Bennetts Associates, said: We’re thrilled to be working with Edinburgh University once again, helping them to achieve their very ambitious estates strategy. Denise and I studied at the nearby Edinburgh College of Art, so we know the site very well and look forward to injecting new life into Lauriston Place once more. Reinterpreting an old hospital with separate wards so that it can provide a dynamic well-connected business environment is an immensely exciting prospect.’

University of Edinburgh principal professor Timothy O’Shea, added: ‘We are very excited about the acquisition of the old Surgical Hospital. It will enable us to expand our outstanding teaching facilities and help us consolidate our position as a world-class university that is accessible to the wider community. Given our long relationship, it is fitting that this beautiful building is to become a permanent part of the University.’

The scheme is Bennetts third major project for the university and follows on from its 2009 Doolan Prize-winning Potterrow development.

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