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Edinburgh, Cala Homes + City & Country

OPEN was appointed in 2014 to develop landscape proposals and undertake Landscape and Visual Impact Assessment (LVIA) for the residential redevelopment of Donaldsons School. Proposals include the redevelopment of the existing Playfair designed school building, and the introduction of a new crescent of development to the north of the existing building. OPEN is working with the project team, developing landscape proposals that respect and respond to the existing situation, but look to enhance the character of the site for the new residential uses.

The Grade A listed Playfair designed existing building is set within 7ha of grounds, positioned on the central axis of a large lawn to the south. The building provides a significant marker for those arriving into Edinburgh from the west, but is protected from adjacent areas by mature wooded boundaries to the west, north and east.

The site offers opportunities to create a landscape setting that intensifies and becomes more intimate in scale in the areas immediately adjacent to the buildings without detracting from the large scale setting. Proposals include parterres, formal gardens and lawns as well as a sensitively renewed central courtyard.

Throughout the development of proposals, OPEN has been fully engaged with the consultation and planning process, attending events with statutory consultees such as Historic Scotland, and members of the public. OPEN has produced information in support of a planning submission, and will be developing technical information for the project.