Basic Site Details

Name: Scottish Office, Victoria Quay
Town, district or village: Leith
City or county: Edinburgh
Country: Scotland
Grid ref:
Notes: Victoria Quay was purchased at a cost of 46million, the acquisition of the building followed the principles of the Private Finance Initiative (PFI). The chosen procurement route was Management Contracting.
Provides accomodation for 1500 office staff.
The building is economically designed and the construction cost was approximately 20% less than similar buildings in Edinburgh.
The repetitive structural system favoured prefabricated construction; the structure is set to a grid based on a basic 1.5m pre-cast module.
The building incorporates high levels of insulation, passive solar control and opening windows; a large thermal mass and sophisticated building management systems were put in place to minimise energy consumption and reduce costs of occupation.
An Access Audit was undertaken by the Scottish Office to ensure provisions were made for the needs of disabled people.
A number of artistic commissions were placed in the public areas of the building;
A Scottish Oak reception desk by designer Erik de Graaf.
A geometrical tile design in the central rotunda by Dundee artist Elizabeth McFall.
An etched and sandblasted glass screen by Glasgow artist Tracy MacKenna.
Tapestry made in Edinburgh by artist Jo Barker.

Building Type Classification

The building is classified under the following categories:
 ClassificationOriginal classification?Notes
Item 1 of 1Government officeYes 


The following date-based events are associated with this building:
 FromToEvent typeNotes
Item 1 of 11995 * Won award or awardsRIAS and Scottish Enterprise Regeneration Design Award

* earliest date known from documented sources.


Design and Construction

The following individuals or organisations have carried out design/construction work. Where architects or practices worked together, matching letters appear beside their names in the Partnership Group column.
 NameRolePartnership GroupFromToNotes
Item 1 of 16Anna WelchLandscape architectA1993(?)1997Landscape Designer
Item 2 of 16Brian Stewart A1993(?)1997 
Item 3 of 16Colin DoyleArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 4 of 16David OrlowskiInterior designerA1993(?)1997 
Item 5 of 16Emily Peel YatesLandscape architectA1993(?)1997Landscape Designer
Item 6 of 16Gary MillinerArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 7 of 16Ian Douglas BurnsArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 8 of 16John Wilson HornalArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 9 of 16Kieran BreenArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 10 of 16Michael ('Mick') Alexander Haig DuncanArchitectA19931997Project director
Item 11 of 16Robert Matthew, Johnson-Marshall & Partners (RMJM)Architectural practiceA19931997(?) 
Item 12 of 16Ruth VaughanArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 13 of 16Simon WhiteArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 14 of 16Stephen HallArchitectA1993(?)1997 
Item 15 of 16Trafalgar House ConstructionContractorA1995(?)1997 
Item 16 of 16Robert Matthew, Johnson-Marshall & Partners (RMJM)Architectural practiceA1997(?) Structural and Service engineering


The following individuals or organisations have commissioned work on this building/design:
Item 1 of 2Howard DayProject Director, Victoria Quay Ltd
Item 2 of 2The Scottish Office 

Related Buildings, Structures and Designs

Parent Structure and Site

This structure is related to the following parent structure or site (click the item to view details):
 Building nameNotes
Item 1 of 1Leith Docks RegenerationMixed use redevelopment of Leith Docks including housing, retail and a permanent mooring site for the Royal Yacht Britannia.


Bibliographic References

The following books contain references to this building:
Item 1 of 1Princeton Arch Staff1995Rassegna 64: Edinburgh Princeton Architectural Pressp63. Charles McKean, "How Grand are the Projects?"

Periodical References

The following periodicals contain references to this building:
 Periodical NameDateEditionPublisherNotes
Item 1 of 5Architects Journal7 December 1995  pgs 29-37
Item 2 of 5Building Design29 March 1996  p16
Item 3 of 5Concrete Quarterly1997Winter Concrete Society Awards in the Heart of the West End, p16
Item 4 of 5ProspectSeptember 1995  autumn issue 57 p5-8
Item 5 of 5Scotsman27 September 1993  Leith Project Displays Its True Colours, by Brian Edwards