Scheme set for full redesign following legal row

David Chipperfield Architects will be forced to overhaul its plans for a £45m concert hall in Edinburgh.

Plans for a new city centre concert hall in the Scottish capital are back on track after Impact Scotland, the developer of the concert hall, and the firm behind the nearby Edinburgh St James site, Nuveen Real Estate, reached an agreed way forward to work together.

Nuveen Real Estate, which made several attempts to block the scheme, made an application for a judicial review of the council’s decision to grant planning last summer. It objected to the concert hall’s height, scale and massing.

While the parties have now agreed to work together, one of the conditions is that Chipperfield will redesign the concert hall and submit a fresh planning application.

Ewan Brown, chair of Impact Scotland, said: “Our ambition is to create a world-class concert hall for Edinburgh and Scotland. To deliver this timeously we have made significant changes to the concert hall plans in order to reflect the sensitivities of the site and the needs of our neighbours.”

Chipperfield’s original plans were approved after a nail-biting five-hour debate last April with councillors voting 6-4 in favour of the World Heritage Site scheme.

In return for the redesign Edinburgh council and Edinburgh St James will jointly seek the permission of the Court of Session for the appropriate disposal of the current judicial review proceedings.

Both developers have agreed to work in partnership to strengthen ongoing dialogue and work together to ensure the successful delivery and then operation of the new concert hall.

Sir Robert McAlpine has been signed to a pre-construction services agreement to build the scheme since last August.