Reproduced from Ordnance Survey digital map data  © Crown copyright, All rights reserved. 2011 Licence number 0100031673

Reproduced from Ordnance Survey digital map data © Crown copyright, All rights reserved. 2011 Licence number 0100031673

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Charlotte Square Public Realm

Edinburgh, Corran Properties Limited

OPEN was commissioned by Corran Properties Limited to develop proposals for the improvement of the public realm within Charlotte Square, Edinburgh. The improvements are associated with the regeneration and re-development of 26-31 Charlotte Square, as well as the future redevelopment of other properties elsewhere on the Square.

Charlotte Square is the most significant set-piece urban space within Edinburgh’s wider New Town, and is regarded as one of the finest examples of Georgian architecture in the world. It is of exacting dimensions and carefully planned proportion. Notwithstanding its importance, Charlotte Square has been eroded in recent years, disconnecting the architecture, gardens and streets and diluting its effect as a key space within the New Town. The proposals developed by OPEN look to redress this, reconnecting each of these three elements through improvements to the public realm.

The sensitive yet forward looking design enhances the character of the Square, with appropriate high quality materials proposed throughout. The scheme includes the introduction of a new pedestrian space associated within the Square. A careful analysis and appraisal of vehicle movements revealed a new controlled solution, reducing the carriageway from four lanes to a single one way route. This redresses the balance in favour of the pedestrian, creating an enticing environment that encourages people to explore, and promotes the safe movement of pedestrians and cyclists. The improved public realm also creates a new context for the historic gardens, providing an enhanced setting for events such as the International Book Festival which uses Charlotte Square as its annual base during August. The scheme was granted planning approval in March 2012.