Future of Flagship University Library set in Caithness Stone
7th April 2010
The North's world-renowned building stone is demonstrating its versatility by featuring in a £57 million Scottish project to create a flagship library for the University of Aberdeen.
Caithness Stone Industries has secured a multi-million pound contract to provide both building and specialist finished stone for key areas of the development. The Wick-based business, which employs 30 local people, will provide walling and flooring for the new library project.
Designed by the leading Danish architectural practice Schmidt Hammer Lassen, the new library will provide state of the art facilities for the 14,000 student community, replacing the existing Queen Mother Library. It will provide a 21st century learning and research environment for students, staff and visitors. Conceived as a cube evoking the ice and light of the north, the new library building has a sharp, modern design, and a striking interior of sweeping contours around an asymmetrical atrium which rises diagonally from the public ground floor through the floors above.
John Sutherland, of Caithness Stone Industries, commented: "The architects have designed a visionary 21st century building. With the range of specialist equipment we have and our own in-house design team we are delighted to play our part in creating a library of which generations to come can be proud."
Caithness Stone Industries, which has four quarry sites in the far north of Scotland, is pro-active in growing its business and has been working with Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) to develop its business.
Hilary Budge of HIE is delighted the business has won such an important contract.
"Caithness stone is one of our area's oldest traditional industries and has been exported all over the world. It is great news that its importance as a quality Scottish product is leading to increased orders. Caithness Stone Industries is exploring more business opportunities than ever before. HIE is delighted to have supported them in buying some of their specialist equipment and in supporting their design work through our graduate placement scheme," she said.
Creating a magnificent new library spearheads the next phase of the University's ambitious investment programme to develop the infrastructure to match its academic aspirations. Professor Christopher Gane, Vice-Principal and academic lead for the library project said. "I am delighted that the University is working in partnership with Caithness Stone Industries in building an iconic, intellectual and cultural facility for both the University community and for scholars and the wider public throughout the world.
"We are determined that the benefits of this exciting new building stretch beyond our staff and students to all who live and work across the north of Scotland.
"The support of individuals and businesses based in the north of Scotland is proving an important component in further strengthening partnerships between the University and major players in the economic, cultural and public life of Scotland."
Atrium entrance, University of Aberdeen.
A drop in event. Seaview Hotel, John O'Groats.
A Caithness distillery has embarked on a major expansion that will boost its turnover and international sales and create at least one new job. Dunnet Bay Distillery (DBDL) has secured a Â£64,000 contribution from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) towards the Â£248,000 development.
The Board of Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has welcomed Professor Lorne Crerar's report on proposed governance arrangements to support the outcomes of the Scottish Government's Enterprise and Skills Review. These recommendations would ensure that a HIE Board effectively remains in place.
Young people in Caithness and Lochaber will be among the first in Scotland to benefit from new Norwegian style learning centres. The centres are aimed at helping young people pursue careers in science, technology, engineering, maths and digital (STEMD).
Ten wave energy development projects have been awarded a total of Â£3 million by Wave Energy Scotland. The projects, devised by individual companies and partnerships, will explore the potential of different materials and processes in the production of wave energy converters (WECs); devices that convert ocean waves into electricity.
Plans for a multi-million pound research and innovation campus in Stromness in Orkney are set to go ahead after the two organisations behind the venture agreed funding for the project. The 3.75-acre campus will support the growth of existing research and innovation activity and the expansion of companies in Orkney's world-leading marine renewables, energy and low carbon sector.
The latest findings of the Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) Business Panel survey have been published (Tuesday 20 December). A total of 1,004 businesses throughout the region took part in the survey between 29 September and 3 November.
The level of income required to afford a socially acceptable standard of living and to participate in society is ten to thirty per cent more expensive in remote rural Scotland than elsewhere in the UK. The report on Minimum Income Standard for Remote Rural Scotland 2016, published today (Wednesday 30 November), was commissioned by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE), Scottish Enterprise (SE), the Rural and Islands Housing Association Forum (RIHAF) and the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations (SFHA).
The chairman of Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) has said he is fully confident about the future of the organisation. Responding to reports this week, speculating about the agencies future following the Scottish Government's review of enterprise and skills bodies, Professor Lorne Crerar, said he had had absolute reassurance from Scottish Government that HIE will continue in its present form.
Leader of The Highland Council, Cllr Margaret Davidson is seeking clarification from Depute First Minister John Swinney about reports claiming that the Board of Highlands and Islands Enterprise is to be scrapped and replaced with a centralised committee. Councillor Davidson said: "If it is correct - it is totally unacceptable that the Scottish Government is to centralise the decision-making powers of Highlands and Islands Enterprise.
[Printer Friendly Version]