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McAslan named winner of £60m Edinburgh geosciences contest

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John McAslan + Partners (JMP) has been announced winner of an international competition for the University of Edinburgh’s new £60 million School of Geosciences

The AJ100 practice defeated a list of unnamed rivals to land the £3.5 million commission which will consolidate several existing facilities on the university’s King’s Buildings Campus.

The appointment comes 37 years after practice founder John McAslan graduated from the university’s MA Architecture course.

On leaving McAslan trained with Cambridge Seven Associates in Boston before returning to London to setup his studio in 1985.

Edinburgh’s School of Geosciences is currently home to the UK’s largest community of geoscientists featuring around 400 academics and research students.

Sandy Tudhope, professor and head of school, commented: ‘The School of Geosciences will be more than just a place of work and learning – it will be an inclusive and diverse community that reaches out to the city and beyond, where chance interactions between diverse users add to the creative flair and shared experience.’

JMP project director Hannah Lawson added: ‘Our concept for the new building for the University of Edinburgh School of GeoSciences is for a global meeting place - a vibrant space that creates an atmosphere of discovery and encourages the interaction and exchange of ideas relating to the factors and forces that shape our world.

‘The new building will significantly enhance the School’s reputation as a world-class academic community.’

The 17,500m² faculty features a central atrium (pictured) which aims to promote transparency and ‘visually connect’ write-up areas, laboratories, group rooms and offices

The University of Edinburgh first advertised the project – which is part of a major overhaul of its King’s Buildings Campus – three years ago.

Other projects on the site include an £80 million refurbishment of the School of Biological Sciences by Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios and the new £11 million Higgs Centre for Theoretical Physics by JM Architects.

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