Shortlist revealed in bid to find Scotland’s best building

The new £80 million V&A museum in Dundee is to go head to head with the refurbished Willow Tearooms and a housing association project in Glasgow in a prize to find Scotland’s best building.

Tollcross Housing Association.

Dundee’s newest museum has been shortlisted for the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) Andrew Doolan Best Building in Scotland Award alongside six other projects. Other contenders include contemporary art space Collective on Calton Hill, Edinburgh – a restoration of the City Observatory designed in 1818 by William Henry Playfair – the £140 million Macallan distillery and visitor experience in Craigellachie and Mackintosh at the Willow, Glasgow.

Also on the list is family home The Black House on the Isle of Skye, the Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service’s Jack Copland Centre in Edinburgh and Tollcross Housing Association Offices in Glasgow.

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A RIAS spokeswoman said: “This year’s Doolan shortlist was selected from the ten RIAS Awards Winners and the panel were struck by the continuing high standard of projects that celebrate the very best that is being built in Scotland.”

The RIAS Andrew Doolan Best Building in Scotland Award was founded in 2002 by architect and entrepreneur, the late Andrew Doolan. Mr Doolan determined this award would be the richest in the UK and that it should go to the best building in Scotland each year. The award is now jointly funded by the Scottish Government and the Doolan Family.

This year’s judges, Professor Sadie Morgan, chair of dRMM, Henry McKeown of JM Architects and Professor Mona Siddiqui, looked for projects which showed innovation and design excellence, irrespective of size or type. Other key considerations were detailing, accessibility, environmental issues and technical skill. The winner, who will receive a gold medal cast by internationally renowned Scottish Goldsmith, James Brent Ward and a cheque for £10,000, will be announced live at a dinner at the National Museum of Scotland in Edinburgh in October by Aileen Campbell, Cabinet secretary for communities and local government, as well as the Doolan family.

In 2018 the Doolan prize was awarded to Nucleus, The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and Caithness Archive – the national archive of the British civil nuclear industry and the archive for the County of Caithness – designed by Reiach and Hall.