Mecanoo Selected to Transform Perth City Hall in Scotland into New Cultural Center


Main Space. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Main Space. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Mecanoo has been selected to design the renovation of the historically landmarked Perth City Hall in Scotland, transforming the building into a new cultural facility through a series of sensitive interventions and a reimagined space flow. Envisioned as a new gateway to Perth, the scheme will pull from the city’s history and culture to create a place that is accessible to all.


Cafe. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Cafe. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

“Mecanoo stood out as having responded sensitively to the brief, conserving much of the historic building with an innovative and flexible design that will stand the test of time,” said Councillor Ian Campbell, Leader of the Perth & Kinross Council. “The panel felt that Mecanoo paid particular attention to the needs of a wide range of visitors and the transformation of the area surrounding City Hall into a vibrant, inclusive civic space of which we can be truly proud.”

The design adds large glazed surfaces to all four elevations and levels the surface surrounding the building to increase transparency and welcome in passers-by. Inside, visitors can navigate between exhibition spaces, a learning center, cafe and retail store, located around the signature barrel vaulted main hall. Within the main hall itself, a central volume has been inserted to exhibit Perth & Kinross Council’s permanent and temporary collections.


Aerial View. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Aerial View. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

© <a href='http://https://www.flickr.com/photos/ninian_reid/21767259146/in/photolist-zauTMu-9Qs2tp-d4Fmpy-d4FjcL-9QuQJd-d4FhDW-d4EZ17-9QuQSY-ed34J3-X1CA4S-9QuR9W-9Qs2cc-s8snXL-9QuRbQ-d4F2GU-9QuQFU-9QuQVd-fDW28n-s8reEJ-T1PJh7-cosyCC-hhAoPj-9Qs2re-9QuQEf-9QuQXb-8CKAqT-pdAt2S-fSbRmh-UezWwG-VZMpkq-pdAyV5-fDVZ3Z-rtdLsp-puNBvX-pwCro4-pb5sgT-X1CB61-d4FaXj-d4EWLY-d4F54A-cosBk1-d4F7Do-9JmUh1-nFzoL3-9pYwWY-yuQxQ-v5M5eB-cotc3w-brazGr-d4FeJ3'>Flickr user ninian_reid</a>. Licensed under CC BY 2.0. ImagePerth City Hall today

© <a href='http://https://www.flickr.com/photos/ninian_reid/21767259146/in/photolist-zauTMu-9Qs2tp-d4Fmpy-d4FjcL-9QuQJd-d4FhDW-d4EZ17-9QuQSY-ed34J3-X1CA4S-9QuR9W-9Qs2cc-s8snXL-9QuRbQ-d4F2GU-9QuQFU-9QuQVd-fDW28n-s8reEJ-T1PJh7-cosyCC-hhAoPj-9Qs2re-9QuQEf-9QuQXb-8CKAqT-pdAt2S-fSbRmh-UezWwG-VZMpkq-pdAyV5-fDVZ3Z-rtdLsp-puNBvX-pwCro4-pb5sgT-X1CB61-d4FaXj-d4EWLY-d4F54A-cosBk1-d4F7Do-9JmUh1-nFzoL3-9pYwWY-yuQxQ-v5M5eB-cotc3w-brazGr-d4FeJ3'>Flickr user ninian_reid</a>. Licensed under CC BY 2.0. ImagePerth City Hall today

Outside, a new seating area will rejuvenate the public space between city hall and the adjacent St John’s Kirk, while a strategic lighting scheme will connect the building back into the urban fabric.

“We’re delighted to have been appointed for this prestigious project,” Francine Houben, Founding Architect and Creative Director of Mecanoo. “We look forward to working together with the local community and Perth and Kinross Council to create an exciting new cultural destination for Perth.”


Learning Center. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Learning Center. Image © Mecanoo Architecten

Perth City Hall joins a number of sensitive yet impactful renovation projects by Mecanoo currently in progress, including the Mies van der Rohe-designed Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Library in Washington, DC, the Het Hof van Nederland heritage museum in Dordrecht, and the New York Public Library’s Stephen A. Schwarzman Building in Manhattan.

To see more of the project, check out the VR walkthrough of the Perth City Hall renovation, here.

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