in march 2018, images of edinburgh’s first dedicated new space for music and performing arts in 100 years were revealed. designed by david chipperfield, the ‘IMPACT centre’ will become the new home of the scottish chamber orchestra, while serving as a year-round destination for performers, audiences, and the wider community. now, as of august 2018, planning documents outlining a revised scheme have been submitted to local authorities for approval.

david chipperfield impact centre
all images by hayes davidson, courtesy of IMPACT scotland

the IMPACT centre will contain a 1,000-seat auditorium, as well as studio, rehearsal, and recording space. the institution will also offer a comprehensive educational outreach program. david chipperfield architects was appointed to design the project in april 2017, with nagata acoustics — the consultancy firm led by dr yasuhisa toyota — tasked with ensuring that the acoustics of the venue’s auditorium are optimized.

david chipperfield impact centre
the building’s foyer could be used for a variety of performances

the structure will sit behind the 1774 home of sir lawrence dundas, a scottish businessman, landowner and politician, which became part of the royal bank of scotland estate in 1825. the building’s banking hall will be directly linked to the complex, bridging the old and new aspects of the scheme.

david chipperfield impact centre
the ground floor and reception area

‘seeing edinburgh at the height of the festivals reinforces just how much the new venue will contribute to the cultural life of the city, during summer and all year round,’ says david chipperfield. ‘the challenge of creating a modern performance space in the heart of the historic new town has been stimulating and the quality of public engagement with the process has contributed greatly to the design of this much needed new music venue in edinburgh.’

david chipperfield impact centre
the view from the crown of the building

three intersecting volumes contain the building’s primary functions: the concert hall is positioned at the center of the site, with the venue’s overlapping lower volumes housing ancillary and public functions. ‘overall, the venue seeks to form an urban composition centered around dundas house, in balance with the prominent civic structures at the opposite end of george street,’ explains the design team.

david chipperfield impact centre
the studio is found at basement level

containing information and ticketing areas, as well as a cloakroom and café, the ground floor foyer has been conceived as a new public room for the city. above, the main concert hall is elevated, freeing the entire entrance level for informal performances, exhibitions, or events. the building’s materiality and form aligns with the surrounding city, with a metal-clad dome crowning the structure.

david chipperfield impact centre
the space can be used for a range of different programs

‘over the past year, the design has been developed and refined following extensive consultation with city officials, heritage bodies, community bodies and the public and we are grateful for everyone’s support and contributions,’ adds sir ewan brown, chair of IMPACT scotland. ‘we believe we now have a building designed to attract performers and audiences of all ages, backgrounds and interests, to a bustling, all-day public space where everyone feels welcome, in a building to be proud of.’ see designboom’s previous coverage of the project here.

david chipperfield impact centre
the main concert hall will contain 1,000 seats

david chipperfield impact centre
contemporary performances can also take place within the venue

david chipperfield impact centre
the IMPACT centre viewed from st andrew square at dusk

philip stevens I designboom

aug 28, 2018