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Third time lucky - Haymarket finally wins approval

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September 20 2004

The EDI’s vision for a mixed-use six-storey arcade at Haymarket, to match the famous Galleria in Milan, is a step closer. On the third attempt Edinburgh’s arms-length development company won planning approval for the first stage of a three-phase project that will fill the last remaining gap site in the city centre. Reiach and Hall re-submitted the proposal in response to demands top reduce the height of the building on Morrison Street following criticism from the Royal Fine Art Commission and World Heritage Trust.
The new proposal is six metres lower on Morrison Street and the proposed modern roof lights have been replaced with a more classical glass roof. The section at the rear of the building has been altered slightly and the elevations have been developed significantly. The building will be clad in a mixed pallet of light and darker stones, possibly granite. In addition to a glazed arcade running parallel to Morrison Street, the building contains a large glazed square, equivalent in scale to Edinburgh’s Hill Square.
Ian Wall, director of EDI, is enthusiastic about the way in which the design is developing. “Neil Gillespie at Reiach and Hall is very good at facades, he can take a very simple facade and by shadow, a slight change of materials and the arrangement of fenestration bars, create a great richness,” said Wall. Wall admits to being ‘slightly irritated’ by some of the building’s critics. EDI’s ambition is to create a new gateway to the city that responds to the scale of the most distinguished parts of the New Town.

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