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Architectural stories on Edinburgh

Scottish National Portrait Gallery Hall Architecture
Visits
Marie de Bryas

Most beautiful interiors in Edinburgh

Edinburgh has on average 124 rainy days a year. So, if you can’t spend time outside, you might as well spend it in the most beautiful interiors of the city. To help you figure out where to go next time the weather foils your plans, here is a selection of the best interiors in Edinburgh open to the public.

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History
Marie de Bryas

Unbuilt Edinburgh

With motorways going through the city, different buildings serving as landmarks, or even a different castle, Edinburgh could have been a drastically contrasting city with what it is today. By exploring what the Scottish capital could have been, we can make sense of the cityscape that we know. Alternatives help to explain decisions made and understand our current built heritage. Therefore, it is interesting to examine unbuilt architectural projects.
Here is a selection of the most interesting schemes proposed for Edinburgh.

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McEwan Hall Edinburgh University History ToursEdinburgh
Visits
Marie de Bryas

Edinburgh Doors Open Days 2019

Every year on Edinburgh Doors Open Days, buildings usually closed to the public open their doors. This is a great opportunity to discover some of Edinburgh’s best architecture. This year on the 28th and 29th of September, over 130 places will be open in the Scottish capital. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed with the amount of options, so we have put together a selection of tried and tested places to visit.

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Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

Art Deco Architecture in Edinburgh

It’s easy to imagine Edinburgh as just a medieval Old Town alongside a Georgian New Town. But our city was never one to stand still, especially during the inter-war period. Our burgh contains numerous hidden 20th century gems that should be admired. Last month we looked at the brutalist heritage of the 1960s. Today let’s jump a few decades earlier and discover the art Deco style of the 1920s and 30s.

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Edinburgh Skyline from Calton Hill | Edinburgh Walking Tours
Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

The future of Edinburgh’s architecture

When walking through Edinburgh, it may seem like the city has been set in stone for centuries. But as William Morris wrote, “All continuity in history means is (…) perpetual changes”. Our city is constantly evolving and is currently building numerous exciting new projects, all enriching Edinburgh’s history. Here is a selection of the most promising upcoming designs.

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Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

Brutalist legacy in Edinburgh

Brutalism is an easy movement to hate on aesthetic grounds. Its bare concrete buildings can stand out in a uniform sandstone city like Edinburgh. The lack of decoration on its block-like structure has fallen out of fashion since the 1970s. Prince Charles even famously qualified a brutalist proposal as a “monstrous carbuncle”. But in order to fully appreciate and understand the style, it is important to understand the moral and historical implication of such movement. Edinburgh has a great legacy of brutalist architecture, offering us a wide range of examples, such as social housing blocks, university buildings or office constructions.

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Victoria Street Edinburgh | Victoria Terrace | Old Town | Royal Mile Tour
Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

EDINBURGH OLD TOWN: CITY SHAPED BY FIRE. PART 3

Standardisation was used as a tool against the threat of fire. However, this method was not completely successful in stopping fires in the old town. Disastrous fires in Edinburgh prompted large scale urban planning projects in the Old Town, which allowed for wider, cleaner, uniform streets.

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Gladstone Land Dormers | Half Shuttered Windows | Royal Mile Tour | Edinburgh Old Town
Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

EDINBURGH OLD TOWN: CITY SHAPED BY FIRE. PART 2

In Part 2 of the series I look at how, after centuries of frequent and repetitive burnings, the city of
Edinburgh started to use its architecture to prevent and reduce fires. Control through laws and regulations was used as a means of prevention.

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John Knox House | Oldest House | Jettying | Timber House |
Edinburgh
Marie de Bryas

Edinburgh Old Town: City Shaped by Fire. Part 1

In this three-part series, I explore how the different forms of fire,
from the physical element, the threat of burning, and the control of this
fire, have all lead to the uniformity of architecture in the historic heart of Edinburgh.

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Royal Mile Tour | Tron Kirk | Edinburgh Old Town Architecture
Edinburgh
Kaja Svab

To Replicate or to Readapt?

At the time of speculations on the replacement of the spire at Notre Dame de Paris, we take a look at how Edinburgh has dealt with restoration of its lost architecture.

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