December 18, 2017

Topping out at NTS Newhailes showing the design process step by step

Newhailes House

Lead image adding the final detail to the top of Newhailes Library Adventure Play

Topping out a project is always an exciting event for the team. It means an end to a project they may have been involved with for just a few months, or up to a few years if they are part of the design or planning teams. The final topping out at NTS Newhailes is one that we absolutely as the design process was a little longer than others due to the slightly restrictive planning required of building within a Walled Garden.

So, we thought it may be interesting to see how the design process unfolds before we even get to site to start the build, let alone complete the topping out. We did cover a little of this in a blog earlier in the year here but this one is even more detailed and for me, more interesting.

We normally start with a site visit to get a feel for the land and look for any strong visual cues we can use that will really embed it into its location. This then leads to some early sketches like this one below.

Initial rough drawings after initial site visit to show exterior roughs

The idea for the build was quite complicated in this case and had some unusual angles and joints, so it was a sensible step to create a miniature model to understand how the lines worked in reality and to ensure it still works when it jumps off the drawing board.

Wooden Model of the Newhailes Library to establish scale

Once we were satisfied that the lines and scale works, we can completely go to town and start adding some of the magic. However good something looks on the surface, it's useless if the engineering that underpins it isn't good enough. This drawing below shows the magic beginning to arrive within the design process within the Walled garden at NTS Newhailes.

The view of the Library from the Avenue at Newhailes

From the more detailed sketches we then work up the 3d design and produce a white render. This allows us to spin it and see it from every angle and again ensure that the design still looks great. We can also ensure there is enough adventure play value embedded into the design and that it will be fun for kids to play together in.

Initial white render to build upon

The white render is then coloured up so you get a much more realistic view of what the finished design will look like when it's built. We actually did another blog post so you can see the on-site build here.

The Newhailes Library coming to life

And then finally when the build is complete, it's finally topped out which looks even more stunning against the low Scottish sunshine. The final job will all be revealed soon, but in the meantime we hope you enjoy seeing the design and build process in even more detail.

Adding the final detail to the topping out at Newhailes Library Adventure Play

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