City Architecture Office  

Drill Hall Arts Centre


Project value: £2m
Client : Out of the Blue Trust
Design Stage: C-L
2004 - 2010
Phase 2 completed 2006
Phase 3 completed 2010

This successful regeneration and transformation of an 11,000 sq.ft listed former Territorial Army Hall has created new studio spaces, a rehearsal room, exhibition & performance space, along with a community cafe providing young people with employment and skills development.

The Drill Hall enables Out of the Blue to use the arts to help form a community, bringing people together and developing local organisations for further sustainable development. It fulfils vital cultural needs and generates opportunities to participate in creative activities as lettable workspace is jeodardised elsewhere in Edinburgh.

Monastic & Souk habitation patterns inspired the layout. A new timber & SIP structure was delicately inserted within the curtilage of the existing hall and is sensitively massed to maintain the character of the original lattice girdered space.

Future flexibility, a key client requirement, was achieved with internal partitions made non-loadbearing to allow for adaptation. Super-insulated rooms are heated and ventilated using an air-source system that minimises energy use by utilising the building’s residual heat. Wet solar panels provide hot water.

British Urban Regeneration Association (BURA) says the Drill Hall project is, ‘an innovative and interesting project… demonstrating best rather than good or average practice with its contribution to environmental dimension of sustainable development.’

Phase 3 saw the creation of a music room, sculpture court, an upper level with a lift & link bridge & 17 stunning work spaces.

Drill Hall Arts Centre
Drill Hall Arts Centre