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Posts Tagged ‘University of Edinburgh’

Architecture Is… A Long Journey

Rob has started writing for a new student architecture magazine, Architecture Is, based in Edinburgh. http://www.architectureis.org/ Here’s an introduction to his regular feature, with the broad title of  ‘A Long Journey’. The first article, Basel: City on the Rhine, has been re-posted above.

The saying ‘the journey is the destination’ seems to be particularly relevant when applied to Architecture. However, choosing architectural studies is a fantastic opportunity (and excuse) to travel, take detours and find out about all sorts of unusual things a normal career would never let you do. Last semester, my design studio turned me into an expert on prawn-fishing! Now I’m working for a local firm in Basel, Switzerland. This kind of experience allows you to find out lots about the urban environment, local culture and surrounding country.

‘Der Weg ist das Ziel’ is a similar German proverb. When I first heard it, the saying sounded like it translated as ‘the way is the style’. I thought it meant that it was a lifestyle you could adopt or mentality – an enjoyment of travelling and seeing where you end up. (It actually means ‘the way is the goal’.) Students in our year have travelled all around the world for their placement. It will be great to hear everyone’s tales when they return next year.

So, to celebrate going on a journey, every two weeks my post will be about something that has interested me as a foreigner living abroad.

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Architecture Is… Magazine

Students at the University of Edinburgh have started producing a magazine, Architecture Is. Aiming to ‘bring a bright and diverse view of Architecture and related arts’, the first blog posts cover the High Line, Invisible Cities, Kirkaldy Maggie Centre and employment at Dezeen. http://www.architectureis.org/

Blinde Kuh, Basel

In her second post, placement reporter Zena Moore features my experience at Baubüro In Situ. She describes Blinde Kuh, a restaurant where you eat in total darkness. Blinde Kuh is a large employer for blind and partially sighted individuals. ‘The architectural idea cleverly turns disability on its head, so that it is you who requires the assistance whilst inside the restaurant’.

Sicht-Bar, Blinde Kuh

New Website

Edinburgh New Town
Edinburgh New Town

As part of my efforts to find a job placement during 2012, I have travelled around Manchester and Liverpool. This is an active way to contact architectural practices, and allows me to explore more of Britain’s largest cities. Stay tuned for articles on Salford Quays and Liverpool Museum.

Earlier this week, my new website launched at www.robhebblethwaite.co.uk/index.html featuring university projects, sample work and contact information. Please have a look and email me for further information.

Arnside Viaduct and Seafood Kitchen

Arnside Viaduct, 1856 (restored 2011)

Happy New Year; all the best for 2012. It seems like quite a while since I’ve written anything online. Hopefully the New Year will provide more time for me to write architectural insights.

My course in MA (Hons) Architectural Design includes the opportunity for a placement period. As such, I am currently looking for work experience at an architecture firm or similar in a period from January-December 2012. Anyone interested can read my CV and view portfolio material at http://issuu.com/rob_hebblethwaite. Stay posted for a new website, on its way very shortly.

Arnside Viaduct, built in 1856, has recently undergone a £11.1 million deck refurbishment. The crossing is part of the Cumbria West Coast Line, linking Carnforth, Barrow and Carlisle. Over time, the structure had become so weak that trains were limited to 30 mph when crossing. In the final four months, this was reduced to 20 mph. In addition, the structure had become too weak to accommodate the lifting cranes required for dismantling. May Gurney, building contractors, were required to replace 102 deck units (two for each of the 51 spans) in a 16 week time period. By installing two new maintenance walkways, independent from the existing bridge deck, they could use a gantry frame to replace the panels. This technique, first trialled at the nearby Leven Viaduct in 2006, purportedly cut construction time by a half. Hopefully, Network Rail will now increase the viaduct speed limit to 60 mph. Certainly, the renewal works have ensured the future of this 150 year old structure.

Over the Christmas break, I compiled a portfolio of third year work. The ‘Explorations’ project seeked to design a sustainable prawn fishing community on the island of Kerrera, Scotland. Analysing the creel fishing process and undertaking a site visit established themes of wave turbulence, micro-climate and weather. The Seafood Kitchen provides fine dining, culinary education and guest accommodation to gastro-tourists wanting to learn more about the prawn fishing industry. My final design is a restaurant that incorporates thermal strategies based on the heat processes involved in seafood preparation.

A Place of My Own

September 26, 2011 Leave a comment


‘A Place of My Own’ is the result of two years’ academic study at the University of Edinburgh. The short book displays work produced in architectural design, technology and history, with examples of projects and concise essays. I found it rewarding to review work from the start of my course and notice the improvement in standard.

My design projects include a renga platform, artisan dwelling, museum of product design, and a dance centre. Essays cover fascist architecture, the Ancien Regime and the Papacy. Finally, technology examines sustainability and building tectonics, with case studies on Waterloo International Terminal and 14a Garway Road, Bayswater.

Dance Centre, Barcelona


Firstly, here’s a little self promotion! My final project in second year involved designing a comunity dance centre within a city square, located in the Barcelona contemporary arts district. The project references surrounding sites, splitting the square into an active side, used for outdoor performance, and a resting square facing a retirement home.

Composed from a simple language of studio volumes, roof canopy and frame, the design places emphasis on permitting/restricting movement through building facades. Interior and exterior social space interpenetrate, forming a boundary condition that protects and shades observers. In the studios, relation to the external environment is through the roof, creating a volume for dancing. High quality material finish ensures these are uplifting spaces.

An Introduction of Sorts

Canal bridge in Venice

Canal bridge in Venice

Welcome to my blog. As an Architecture student, based at the University of Edinburgh, I am passionate about Architecture, its history, and the world of design in general. My mission is to inform and entertain, ranging from the web-surfing public to those in the profession. Thought provoking posts will offer a window on the ‘delight’ to be found in our built environment. Architectural design has a strong impact on our everyday lives, providing the setting for work, rest and play. Like the backing score for a successful film, we can often choose to ignore architecture completely, or only recognise when good design is absent. With this blog, I am asking you to spend more time exploring our built world, discovering its merits and history. The journey will include plenty of interest, facts, and some things to make you smile.