BBC''s waterfront HQ wins architecture award

11 Jun 2008

The BBC Scotland building at Pacific Quay is one of five Scottish winners of the 2008 RIBA Awards. The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) announced the five winners from north of the border, recognising the current quality of architectural work in Scotland.

Arnie Dunn, President of the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland, said: "This year's RIBA awards demonstrate, once again, that Scottish architects who work within one of the most demanding climates in Europe are creating buildings which stand comparison with the very best in the UK. The RIAS is particularly pleased with the diverse building types represented on this year's list, which demonstrate the skills of our membership across a tremendous range of highly complex and demanding projects."

The Scottish 2008 RIBA Award winners are (listed alphabetically):

  • BBC Scotland at Pacific Quay, Glasgow David Chipperfield Architects
  • Castlemilk Stables, Glasgow Elder and Cannon Architects
  • New Arts Faculty Building, University of St Andrews Reiach and Hall Architects
  • Pier Arts Centre, Victoria Street, Stromness Reiach and Hall Architects
  • Todlaw Supported Housing, Duns Oliver Chapman Architects

The judging panel for this year, chaired by Jamie Fobert, architect and winner of the 2003 Manser Medal, also included Arnie Dunn, President of the RIAS, and Daphne Thissen, Acting Head of the Press and Culture Department of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The panel was advised by RIAS Secretary & Treasurer, Neil Baxter. The RIBA Awards, among the most prestigious annual architectural awards in the UK, have been running continuously since 1966. RIBA Awards are given for buildings that achieve the highest architectural standards and make a substantial contribution to the local environment. RIBA Award-winning buildings go on to be considered for RIBA National Awards, which will be awarded at a ceremony on 27 June 2008.

BBC Scotland at Pacific Quay

Central to the design is the placement of a sequence of large studio spaces in the centre of the building, stepping up in scale towards the back. The negative space above has been utilised as a massive central atrium. The elegant sculptural block is full of activity and holds everything together. By hiding the set of studios beneath it the architects have resolved a major element of the brief into a piece of architecture and created a central space to house the cultural life of the building.

The question of how to make something that is purely functional into something socially and sculpturally successful has here been addressed with great skill. The architecture has seamlessly resolved technical, production, office-based and social functions within a singularly awe-inspiring volume.

  • BBC Scotland HQ by McAteer Photograph