Radical reimagining to make Edinburgh's King's Theatre accessible to all
June 8 2020
A formal application has been made for the most radical transformation of Edinburgh's A-listed King's Theatre since its opening in 1906.
Bennetts Associates have been appointed by Capital Theatres to undertake a series of alterations and improvements to the 110-year old venue which will improve access while enabling the theatre to facilitate a range of community and educational programmes.
Key to this approach will be the introduction of step-free access 'from street to seat' together with a range of back-stage improvements designed to meet the needs of contemporary productions including an extended fly tower, new lighting gantries and technical facilities.
New circulation routes will be created around twin lifts while the ground floor is opened up at street level with a new cafe and box office to South Lane within a new extension. On the upper floors a new events space, learning and participation studio will be fashioned.
External alterations will also include a replacement for the non-original canopy and a neon sign to better display previously hidden architectural features.
In a planning statement the applicant wrote: "Currently, uncertainty remains on the impact of the COVID 19 virus and the essential need to focus on public health. Moving forward, we must continue to consider the future viability of performance and cultural venues to ensure these facilities remain available for as many people as possible. The project programme has been delayed by a period of one year with construction due to commence mid-2022. In the meantime, we remain actively engaged in achieving planning and listed building consent."
The application has been brought forward with technical assistance from Theatreplan; Thomas & Adamson; Max Fordham; Will Rudd Davidson and Gleeds.