Edinburgh Building, Scotland Architectural Photos, Architects News, Lothian Designs Images, Information

Edinburgh Architecture

Architecture in the Scottish Capital, UK Built Environment

post updated 14 July 2021

Edinburgh Buildings

Edinburgh the capital of Scotland and a renowned city for architecture. Famous architects that have completed buildings here include Robert Adam, Norman Foster and Enric Miralles. The city has two main parts: the medieval Old Town and the Georgian New Town. The latter reputedly forms the largest neoclassical grouping in the World whilst the former contains the famous Royal Mile with Edinburgh Castle at its top, St Giles Cathedral in the middle and the Royal Palace at its base.

Ten Key Edinburgh Buildings

Edinburgh Buildings, chronological:

1. Edinburgh Castle, Old Town
Date built: various dates
Design: various architects / masons
Edinburgh Castle
photo © Adrian Welch
Edinburgh Castle

2. St Giles Kirk, Old Town
various dates
Design: various architects / masons
St Giles Cathedral (High Kirk) on the world-famous Royal Mile

3. Calton Hill – various buildings, New Town
various dates
Design: various architects : Playfair; Cockerell; Burn; Hamilton
Calton Hill
picture © Isabelle Lomholt
Calton Hill – mostly Greek Revival buildings

4. National Gallery of Scotland, The Mound
Date built: 1858
William Playfair Architect
National Gallery of Scotland
image © Adrian Welch
National Gallery of Scotland by William Playfair

5. Old College of Edinburgh University, Old Town
various dates
Design: various architectsRobert Adam; William Playfair; Rowand Anderson
Old College

6. Palace of Holyroodhouse, Old Town
various dates
Design: various architects / masons
Palace of Holyroodhouse : still used by HM The Queen for Scottish engagements

7. Museum of Scotland – Extension, Old Town
Date built: 1999
Benson + Forsyth Architects
Museum of Scotland
photo © Adrian Welch
Museum of Scotland

8. Dance Base, Grassmarket, Old Town
Date built: 2001
Malcolm Fraser Architects
Dance Base
image © Isabelle Lomholt
Dance Base : National Dance Centre – Stirling Prize nominee 2002
Malcolm Fraser buildings

9. Earthworks – Ueda at the SNGMA
Date built: 2002
Charles Jencks with Terry Farrell
Edinburgh Landform
picture © Adrian Welch
Landform by Charles Jencks : spiral mounds using earth and water by architecture theorist Charles Jencks with architect Terry Farrell

10. Scottish Parliament, Old Town
Date built: 2004
Scottish Parliament
picture © Adrian Welch
The Scottish Parliament Building is the most talked about Scottish architecture in decades : building designed by Enric Miralles – Stirling Prize winner 2005. If there is one building you shouldn’t miss on your visit to the Scottish cpaital this is it.
Scottish Parliament Building
photograph © Keith Hunter

We do architecture tours in Edinburgh and Glasgow – please contact isabelle(at)e-architect.com

Recent Edinburgh Building News

Edinburgh BioQuarter Development
Three new life sciences companies have moved into this research centre building by Michael Laird Architects. Nine at the BioQuarter is a flagship multi-occupancy building for early stage and established life sciences companies. The styling of the architecture is clean and bold.

National Portrait Gallery Edinburgh
The Scottish National Portrait Gallery reopened in 2011, following a £18m restoration. This 19th century building by Robert Rowand Anderson was redeveloped by Glasgow architects Page Park. It is a well-loved building with a memorable old red sandstone facade. Internally the focus is on the foyer (pictured) which is a deligthful space with a wonderful ‘mural’ telling the story of Scotland.

Caltongate Development
Caltongate – Edinburgh City Council reaches compromise agreement with the new developer Artisan who will make £6.5m worth of improvements to the area around the site, but just a £50,000 contribution to the city’s tram project. Work is set to get underway within months at Caltongate – one of Edinburgh’s most notorious gap sites after developers said they would retain almost half of a £300m scheme.

Edinburgh Tours – Architecture Walking Tours of the city

Key Public Spaces in the city – Edinburgh Squares & Parks

Holyrood Park – Arthur’s Seat
Princes Street
Charlotte Square
Royal Mile & Calton Hill : see building links further up page

EICC Building
photograph © AW

The highest profile Edinburgh building – Scottish Parliament Photographs:
highest profile Edinburgh building - Scottish Parliament
thumbnail photo © Adrian Welch

Key Edinburgh Buildings

Building, alphabetical:

Balmoral Hotel
Commonwealth Pool
Dynamic Earth
Festival Theatre
Harvey Nichols Edinburgh
Royal Bank of Scotland HQ
Royal High School
St James Centre
Scott Monument
Scottish Poetry Library
Scottish Storytelling Centre
Scottish Widows
Edinburgh International Conference Centre

Key Edinburgh Projects
Edinburgh Park – masterplan by Richard Meier

Location: Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Key Buildings near to Edinburgh

Rosslyn Chapel – filmed for Da Vinci Code

James Stirling building at St Andrews

Scottish Architecture

Architecture Walking Tours

Scottish Architects

Comments / photos for the Edinburgh Architecture page welcome