RCAHMS propose to establish an archive facility in Granton to store their broad collection of material within heavily controlled conditions. The siting of the building towards the eastern boundary of the site creates two major external spaces.
The Gathering Place - the agora – the ancient Greek ‘place of assembly’ – represents the public arrival space to the building. Utilising quality hard landscape and lighting treatments, the gathering place continues the design standards of the public realm spaces currently implemented as part of the wider Granton masterplan.
The Archive Garden presents a systematic and ordered display of plants based on botanical, medical and cultural knowledge and understanding, and typifies the historical concept of the enclosed garden – the hortus conclusus – tailored to suit the specifics of project and location. Utilising a limited palette of plants symbolising the Scottish landscape transferred to a decorative garden setting, the archive garden represents a microcosm of the Scottish landscape, creating an oasis of contemplation and a sanctuary of calm from the surrounding area.