Construction Begins at Peterhead Fish Market

Works have commenced up in Peterhead with the construction of our new fish market for Peterhead Port Authority underway. It’s been a busy 4 weeks so far clearing the massive site and discovering hidden historic structures below ground and unknown redundant services.

Also occuring adjacent to the site, is the refacing of the existing quay walls and deepening on the harbour by another contractor. With two different contractors working so near to each other for the same client, careful coordination of both projects was required to be carried out. This ensured that all aspects of health and safety; integration of services and clear lines of communication including sharing of design information has been carried out and managed effectively.

The foundations of the support accommodation block are currently being formed ready to receive the first structural steel arriving on site in a couple of weeks, whilst the forming of foundations will continue along the 100m length of the main market building.


Housing Development Massing Study


We are currently doing some initial design work on an awkward shaped site in Glasgow’s West End. The triangular site has limited access and development boundaries on its northern and eastern edges limiting the extent of developable area. A number of different uses for the site are being considered including the possibility of some form of housing.

One thing the site does benefit from is potentially fantastic views so we are exploring some initial massing options that maximise this but without impeding development on the adjacent sites. There is a general datum level around 5-6 storeys in the surrounding area although the site is relatively open in the immediate vicinity therefore we need to be mindful of the impact of the height.

Due to the relatively small footprint and difficult access issues we are considering some form of modular or pre-fabricated structure to minimise the works on site. There has been a significant increase in the last few years in the use of shipping containers as a structural frame therefore this is one option currently being considered. Still at the very early stages but hopefully we can get something developed up to Planning stage later in the year.

Broken Ground

After three years on the drawing board (and a few hiccups with the local authority along the way), work has finally commenced on site for a new 3-bedroom family home that we are very excited to be involved with. The house is located beside Fordoun, south Aberdeenshire and will be constructed by a local builder, Alan Lorimer from Inverbervie.

The house will incorporate several renewable and low carbon technologies including; photovoltaic panels on the roof to general electricity; a Daikin Altherma air source heat pump located in the garden which will extract heat from the outside air and transfer this to the central heating system within the house; a mechanical ventilation with heat recovery (MVHR) system from Systemair which extracts moist, stale and polluted air from the wet rooms such as bathrooms and the kitchen, and passes this over a heat exchanger with the heat then transferred to incoming fresh, filtered air and resupplied back into the habitable rooms such as bedrooms and the living room.



Iceland Visit

Whilst on holiday in Iceland last month, I visited the Harpa concert hall in Reykjavik. The Harpa is a concert hall and conference centre with the opening concert held on May 4th 2011.

The building features a distinctive coloured glass facade inspired by the basalt landscape of Iceland.

The Harpa was designed by the Danish firm Henning Larsen Architects in co-operation with Danish-Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson. The structure consists of a steel framework clad with geometric shaped glass panels of different colours.

In contrast to the contemporary modern architecture of the concert hall, I was also taken with several of the traditional rural churches we came across which had real character and charm.

Church (1949) in Möðrudalslur, Iceland – the highest inhabited settlement in the country at 469m above sea level.

Hruni Church (1865) in Hruni, Iceland.


Business Fours Charity Golf Day

Arch Henderson were delighted to take part in the inaugural Business Fours Golf Tournament in support of the Beatson Cancer Charity at the Dundonald Links in Troon. Competing in the Construction, Housing and Property Heat our team consisted of Andrew and Chris from the Glasgow Office with Neal and Kevin (standing in for the injured Richard) from the Aberdeen Office. Despite Chris and Kevin posting stableford scores in the 40s we narrowly missed out on making the final to be held at the end of May in St Andrews. It was a fantastic day out and as well as raising money for charity it was a great opportunity to play at the venue of the 2017 Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open.

Glasgow Office Refurbishment

Works progressing on site

Our latest office refurbishment project in Glasgow is starting to take shape on site. The existing open plan office is being redesigned to accommodate fifty new work stations. In addition to this there are refurbished toilets, a kitchen/ breakout area and a new locker room. Due to inadequate heating and ventilation, new building services need to be introduced throughout. Whilst this obscures the existing rooflights within the open office area investigation revealed that they are no longer fit for purpose and would require significant upgrading for continued use. The most significant change is therefore the introduction of six large windows, maintaining the natural light but also providing views. The works are being delivered under a very tight programme of seven weeks in order to meet the client’s staffing requirements. The project is due for handover at the end of March.

This project represents a continuation of refurbishment works being carried out for our client over a number of buildings. The reactivation of a number of previously unused or dilapidated spaces reflects the increase in the client’s business activities. It also provides an opportunity to create a high quality level of fit out across a number of locations, consistent in appearance.

We work closely with our clients therefore the palette of materials has been developed to meet their requirements. This includes carpets from Forbo Flooring, ceiling tiles from Armstrong Ceilings and toilet cubicles from Interplan. The footprint of the overall development totals approximately 400m²/ 4,300ft² and is being delivered under an NEC3 contract.

House Extension Cladding Study

We don’t usually get involved in too many house extension projects unless there is something especially interesting about it. This proposed extension to a Victorian sandstone property in Glasgow is one that fits the bill though. The building adjoins the neighbouring property and has a number of sloping roofs presenting both an aesthetic and technical challenge. There are lots of beautiful existing features to the property. This present us with the opportunity to design a response that both acknowledges the traditional construction methods but introduce a more contemporary twist. We’re still at the early stages but enjoying exploring the material options as well as playing about with animated GIFs!

Facilities Refurbishment

Granted, not the most exciting of projects however it’s a straightforward refurbishment that makes a big impact. The existing toilet facilities support the client’s manufacturing operations on a large industrial site. Having been condemned due to a collapsed floor the toilets were in urgent need of upgrading. The brief was simple, strip out existing and replace with new fittings on a like for like basis. A new timber floor was installed along with new WCs, sinks and showers and all completed within 6 weeks. We specialise in refurbishment works, often delivered within a short timeframe and this project represents our first project to be handed over in 2017. Before and after photographs below…



Here’s to 2017…

2016 was certainly a memorable year in terms of global political and cultural events. Closer to home it was notable in architectural terms with the RIAS Festival of Architecture of which Arch Henderson were proud to be a sponsor of. Our architectural team also experienced a busy year and have much to look forward to in 2017. Our increased workload over the last year has seen our team expand with two new members of staff. In Glasgow Gabriella has joined us as a Part II graduate looking to complete her Part III later in the year. We have also gained an architectural presence in our Thurso office with Alan who brings over 30 years of experience as an Architect working in the Highlands & Islands.

With a number of big projects due to hit site in the coming months we hope to have another successful year and wish all the best to our colleagues, friends and clients.


Manufacturing Facility Refurbishment

Arch Henderson have recently received planning approval for the redevelopment of a major manufacturing facility in Glasgow. The project involves the refurbishment out of an existing industrial facility with a total footprint area of approximately 5,350m²/ 57,500ft² and will include the recladding and reroofing of the entire facility. The new building will operate as a manufacturing facility for shipbuilding operations on the Clyde and include new office and amenity facilities along with a partial replacement of the floor slab and new building services throughout. With the existing building now largely cleared ready for the demolition works the vastness of the space and the scale of the development can be fully appreciated. Works are due to start on site in the spring and continue throughout 2017.