Quartermile: urban regeneration and modern Architecture in Edinburgh

Architectural photograph of urban regeneration at Quartermile district in Edinburgh

Urban Regeneration and modern architecture in Edinburgh

According to The Guardian “Urban regeneration is the attempt to reverse that decline by both improving the physical structure, and, more importantly and elusively, the economy of those areas. In all regeneration programmes, public money is used as an attempt to pump prime private investment into an area”

Architectural photograph of urban regeneration at Quartermile district in Edinburgh
Architectural photograph of urban regeneration at Quartermile district in Edinburgh. Photography by James Thompson. Client J&D Pierce (Contracts) Ltd.

The purpose of regeneration is to deliver a long-lasting solution

RG Group state that urban  regeneration is about bespoke solutions for local communities and continues to qualify this statement with “Critically, the purpose of regeneration is to deliver a long-lasting solution in the form of sustainable new communities. This often means looking at the needs and challenges of a location and its economy, and consulting with all stakeholders involved to establish current and potential issues. The end result should be a project that delivers on an economic level but is also tailored to serving the local community.”

Architectural photograph of urban regeneration at Quartermile district in Edinburgh
Architectural photograph of urban regeneration at Quartermile district in Edinburgh. Architectural photography by James Thompson.

Quartermile is built on the former site of the  Royal Infirmary

Demands of inner city urban regeneration are allowing modern architects to blend modern designs and building techniques with more traditional approaches. Quartermile is a marketing name, my guess is that usually a quarter mile takes approximately 5 minutes to cover at average walking speed. Quartermile is located within the heart of Edinburgh and is only a ‘short walk’ to some of Edinburgh’s key treasures.

Map of Attrations close to Quartermile
Attrations close to Quartermile. Map courtesy of Invest in Scotland.

The “Vision of Quartermile”

The urban regeneration of 19 acres of Edinburgh’s city centre into one of Europe’s premier business, residential and leisure quarters. Restoring the best of the historic buildings and integrating them with new architecture.

Photograph of luxury apartment buildings in Quartermile, Edinburgh
Urban regeneration is the vision of quartermile-making Edinburgh’s city centre one of Europe’s premier business, residential and leisure quarters. Architectural photography by James Thompson.

Masterplanned vy Foster and Partners Quartermile is truly a mixed use development and boasts some impressive stats ( thanks to Invest in Scotland).

  • GDV in excess of £650 million
  • 31 buildings
  • 8 listed buildings
  • 1100 homes
  • 400 000 square feet of Grade A office
  • 7 acres of public landscaping
Photograph of Quartermile Edinburgh-truly mixed use development
Quartermile Edinburgh- mixed use development. Photography by James Thompson

400 000 square feet of Grade A office space.

photograph of Quartermile Edinburgh: 400 000 square feet of Grade A office space.
Quartermile Edinburgh: beautiful example  of Grade A office space.  Architectural photography by James Thompson.  Award of Excellence for Commercial Photography.

 Impressive client list of Corporate Occupants at Quartermile

Photograph of Corporate occupants of Quartermile Edinburgh
Corporate occupants of Quartermile Edinburgh-image courtesy of Invest in Scotland.

I was commissioned by two clients to provide Architectural photographs of the completed buildings. One of them being the company responsible for much of the structural steel fabrication and erection, J&D Pierce (Contracts) Ltd, based in Glengarnock. You can find more information on their projects here.

photograph of Q3-Quartermile-Cafe-Edinburgh
Q3-Quartermile-Cafe-Edinburgh. Architectural photography by James Thompson.
Q3-Quartermile-Cafe-Edinburgh. Architectural photography by James Thompson. 
Q3-Quartermile-Cafe-Edinburgh. Architectural photography by James Thompson.
photograph of Urban regeneration. Retail area quartermile Edinburgh
Urban regeneration. Retail area quartermile Edinburgh. Photography by James Thompson.

On the three occasions that I have visited Quartermile there has been a combination of rain and sunshine! I am a fan of glass buildings so it was a real pleasure for me to work o this project. My initial focus was to capture the Office and Leisure aspect of Quartermile. I than moved on to the Residential aspect both private and social.

photograph of Edinburgh-Quartemile rmixed use urban regeneration
Edinburgh-Quartermile rmixed use urban regeneration. Architectural photograph by James Thompson.

Urban Regeneration: New affordable homes in Quartermile development.

Researching this topic for my blog, I found a very interesting article on affordable homes in Quartermile on Edinburgh Governments website.

The spokesman states that

“the Council was the first in Scotland to develop this policy, which specifies that 25% of the homes in any residential development of 12 or more properties in the city must be approved as affordable housing in order to gain planning permission. The objective of this condition is to deliver mixed, sustainable communities in all wards of the city. It is largely thanks to this policy that it has been possible to deliver affordable homes in a location where property prices are often at a premium.

The construction was also made possible by the Scottish Government’s Affordable Housing Supply Programme (AHSP) which awarded £6.867 million of grant funding to be administered by the Council.  Hillcrest Housing Association invested a further £5.845 million to subsidise the social rented flats and funded the remaining 76 mid-market rent properties.

A total of 900 properties have been created on the iconic site of the old Royal Infirmary, 174 of which are affordable homes. The development is made up of a mixture of one, two and three-bed flats, with 98 available for social rent and 76 available at mid-market rent levels. Seven of the flats have been specially designed to be accessible for wheelchair users.

Housing Leader, Councillor Cammy Day, said: “The completion of high-quality, affordable housing in such a central and iconic location is a great achievement for the Council and its partners and is also an important milestone for social housing in the city.”

Full article from Edinburgh Gov available here: 

Photograph of affordable housing in Quartermile. Wharton Square, Lauriston Place Edinburgh.
affordable housing in Quartermile. Wharton Square, Lauriston Place Edinburgh.Photograph by James Thompson.

Research information/material  derived from:

Invest in Scotland Business Breakfast: Quartermile

Edinburgh Government new affordable homes in Quartermile development

Richard Murphy Architects: Wharton Square, Lauriston Place Edinburgh.

More from my portfolio of Architectural photography

Sleeperz Hotel Dundee

Jaguar Land Rover Dealership Ayr- Park’s Motor Group

Queen Elizabeth University Hospital Glasgow

National Innovation Centre for Ageing and Data Newcastle

V&A Museum Dundee

Dundee Railway Station

Construction Photography Awards

Finally I’d just like to add I was awarded Industrial Photographer of the Year 2018 via The Master Photographers Association, I am very proud to have received this award.

I also gained an Award of excellence for my Commercial Photography. I travel UK wide and have full Professional Indemnity, Public Liability Insurance, I’m DBS Certified and I’m  a  Construction Photographer with a CSCS Card.

If you’d like to get in touch call me on 07817 512 234 or email info@ukconstructionphotography.co.uk

licentiate_medal master photographers association

 

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