Justice Mill Lane Aberdeen, Hazledene Group developer, Hardgate building construction, Architect news
Justice Mill Lane, Aberdeen
Hazledene Group Northeast Scotland Building Development design by Richard Murphy Architects
5 Oct 2010
Design: Richard Murphy Architects
Justice Mill Lane Aberdeen
Justice Mill Lane
This design plays a major part in the redevelopment of an area in the western end of Aberdeen’s city centre behind Union Street. Formerly home to a disused petrol station and warehouse and then for some time a cleared site, the completed Justice Mill Lane project comprises grade ‘A’ commercial office space, a high quality business hotel and underground car parking.
The developer inherited a planning consent mostly for housing which had already achieved a very high plot ratio. Although housing was also an element in our competition winning design, the brief omitted this at a later stage.
The aim of Richard Murphy Architects was to build therefore two substantial adjacent buildings, each having a significant urban presence and yet to accommodate the floor plates required without dwarfing the scale of Justice Mill Lane or overpowering the adjacent flats to south and east. Seen from close quarters the top two floors facing Justice Mill Lane disappear as a result of having been set back behind an overhanging soffit.
The rear elevation steps down in response to the size of the neighbouring flats. At ground level on Justice Mill Lane the bottom two floors are angled inwards to increase the width of the street. The hotel entrance is located at the significant corner of the site and the surrounding area has been hard landscaped and planted to form part of the public realm. A historic well has been marked in the paving.
The office and hotel buildings are two distinct entities but are designed with a common palette of materials to form a unified composition. Granite makes a robust base, rooting the buildings in their setting. Then as the elevations rise up from the ground the stone gives way to curtain walling with an expressive glazing structure for the office and overlapping, rendered, ‘floating’ panels for the hotel. A projecting cornice visually ties the two structures together at this level, mediating between four floors of office space and five floors of hotel. Zinc and glass clad the uppermost levels with a distinctive saw-tooth angled bay arrangement of hotel windows.
The 13,766m2 six storey office building is planned around a central atrium with stepped section, helical stair and an intended cafe / social space. The atrium coupled with extensive perimeter glazing results in a high level of natural day-lighting within the office floor plates. To the south the Justice Mill Lane building steps down forming sun terraces, allowing office workers to inhabit the exterior of the building and take advantage of the impressive views of the distant hills.
The 8,775m2 seven storey hotel is also centred round a day-lit space. The reception area, restaurant, function suite and meeting rooms open onto a south facing courtyard through folding glass walls. Each of the 185 bedrooms has extensive glazing. Hotel facilities include a corner gym offering guests an elevated view over historic Aberdeen.
The Justice Mill Lane construction cost was £45m, with a total project cost of £75m, privately funded. Construction of the Justice Mill Lane development took 26 months.
Photography by Paul Zanre
Justice Mill Lane Aberdeen design : Richard Murphy Architects
Justice Mill Lane Development
News Update – Sep 2008
This major Aberdeen city development goes on site: First Minister, Alex Salmond, broke the turf
Justice Mill Lane Aberdeen – Building Information
Title: Justice Mill Lane
Building Cost: £75m approximate
Architects: Richard Murphy Architects
Location: corner of Hardgate, Aberdeen city centre
Site: former Satrosphere site redevelopment, dilapidated site
Buildings: grade A office space + landmark hotel + residential accommodation
Developer: Hazledene Group
Contractor: Miller Construction
Received planning permission Jun 2007
Purchased by Hazledene from AWG Property for £3.4m in early 2006
Approved Jun 2006
‘IQ’ scheme: 180+ bedroom Park Inn Hotel (for Rezidor hotel group), 125 flats within a seven-storey glass and steel tower, and a 210-space underground car park
Limited invitation architecture competition: 18 Aug 2006
Justice Mill Lane – information from Richard Murphy Architects 2007:
Justice Mill Lane Hotel and Office Development
Won in competition, our major mixed use inner city site unites both the commercial buildings and the hotel, making a single composition around the public edge of the site.
Our overall strategy for the site was designed around the creation of semi public courtyards in the centre of the site and was concerned always to try and establish a new piece of the city rather than just a closed commercial development.
The Justice Mill Lane scheme is split between high quality office space and a Radisson SAS Hotel for The Rezidor Hotel Group.
This hotel creates 164 bedrooms plus all associated public and service facilities. The total office floor area (gross) is just over 13,000m2. This is a significant building, but it is a new part of the dense urban centre of Scotland’s third largest city, one which has major international connections particularly related to the oil industry. Buildings of this scale are being built elsewhere in the city and are a valuable part of its growth and development.
The project for Hazledene Estates Ltd was won in competition last summer and the planning consent was approved in June this year.
Justice Mill Lane Aberdeen – Building Information:
Construction cost: £35 million
Client: Hazledene Estates Ltd
Contract type: Design & Build
Construction period: Planning Consent Approved Jun 2007
Justice Mill Lane images / information from Richard Murphy Architects 230807
Location: Justice Mill Lane, Aberdeen, Northeast Scotland
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