Reid Building, Glasgow School of Art
Glasgow School of Art
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Images: © Alan McAteer / Arup / Steven Holl
Glasgow School of Art set the brief for a new building, directly opposite the world renowned Mackintosh Building, which was badly damaged by a serious fire in May. The original structure was recently voted architects’ favourite building of the past 200 years, meaning the new building needed to be sustainable, functional and able to hold its own next to its striking neighbour. The client’s requirements included excellent, high quality facilities and an environment to inspire creative education and research in the visual disciplines of the 21st century. It was essential to support the school’s redevelopment strategy, uniting dispersed departments into a single, efficient and sustainable location.
The judges were impressed by the central role that the complex, exposed structure plays in the achievement of outstanding teaching and studio spaces in this dramatic new building. The concrete structure includes perforated tubes, inclined at 12 degrees, rising up through the main atrium and supporting a winding, Escher-like, ‘stair to infinity’. The decarbonising strategy was extended to the entire campus, maximising the sustainability return on investment, and achieving a 20% improvement on the applicable carbon targets.