Zaha Hadid Architects and Richard Murphy Architects are among five teams in the running for the £42 million regeneration of Paisley Museum and Art Gallery
Amanda Levete’s AL_A, MUMA and WilkinsonEyre with Purcell are thought to complete the shortlist, although the names of the finalists have yet to be confirmed by the project’s client, Renfrewshire Council.
The architect-led multidisciplinary team chosen for the £2 million contract will draw up plans to refurbish and extend the Category A-listed Neoclassical building, which hosts the world’s largest collection of Paisley shawls, along with many 19th-century Scottish paintings and local history artefacts.
The Paisley Museum Reimagined project, planned to complete in 2022, aims to transform the John Honeyman-designed building into a leading European museum focusing on the historic town and its iconic decorative pattern. The search for a design team began in December shortly after Paisley lost out to Coventry in the race to become UK City of Culture 2021.
A Renfrewshire Council spokesperson said: ‘We are currently tendering for an architect for the £42 million project to turn Paisley Museum into an international-class destination showcasing the town’s outstanding art, science and natural history collections and globally significant textile heritage.
‘We hope to be able to make an appointment later this year. As the contract is subject to a procurement process, we cannot confirm any detail at this stage.’
Paisley Museum and Art Galleries was a gift to the town from local industrialist Peter Coats. The 1871 complex also includes a library and observatory.
The latest project will extend, renovate and refurbish the historic museum and art gallery, which aims to become a major visitor destination and a new centre for learning, skills development, innovation and research.
Planned improvements include a ‘bold new café, shop and reception’ fronting Paisley High Street, along with new public areas and upgraded internal circulation. Bids will be evaluated 80 per cent on quality and 20 per cent on cost.