Original features

March 5, 2009

The Craiglockhart Campus is home to Edinburgh Napier University Business School. A £30 million extension and refurbishment programme, completed in 2004, was designed to provide up-to-date teaching and learning facilities for about 4,000 students.

It now houses the Edinburgh Institute, the Employment Research Institute, the Centre for Festival and Event Management, the Transport Research Institute, the Moffat Centre to support student entrepreneurs and a permanent exhibition on war poets.

The key architectural challenge was to find a practical contemporary solution that could incorporate the original listed building, which dates to 1880, and fit in with Edinburgh's varied built heritage.

The central atrium features an open-plan learning space along with a cafe, 200 computers and wireless internet connections.

The development includes a new teaching block and the wedge-shaped 400-seat Stephen Riady lecture theatre.

Even more striking is the titanium-clad, egg-shaped 200-seat Lindsay Stewart lecture theatre, which faces out towards Edinburgh Castle.

Although the egg has become an iconic feature of the cityscape, its design is eminently practical. The oval shape draws students closer to the lecturer at the front of the hall, improving acoustics and interaction.

Send suggestions for this architectural series to: matthew.reisz@tsleducation.com

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