Heriot Watt University, Edinburgh

Contractor: Bowmer and Kirkland
Architect: Reiach and Hall
Project Value: £33,000,000

Oriam is Scotland’s national performance centre for sport, based at Heriot-Watt University’s Riccarton campus in Edinburgh. The Scottish Rugby Union and the Scottish Football Association will use it as a training facility.

Construction work began in March 2015, the £33 million facility opened in August 2016. The indoor football pitch is covered by a curved steel frame with a PVC roof, the shape of which has been likened to the trajectory of “the goal which defied physics” which was scored by Brazilian football player Roberto Carlos against France in 1997. The building won the Future Building section at the 2016 Scottish Design Awards.

The centre has a FIFA-accredited indoor synthetic 3G pitch which is the largest of its type in Europe. Its dimensions of 116 metres by 76 metres are the same size as those of Hampden Park’s pitch. At the midpoint of this playing space, the roof is 28m high and there is a 15m playing height at the sides. The space accommodates a viewing area that can seat 500 people. There is also a synthetic pitch outdoors. There are natural surfaces outside too- five grass football pitches and two grass rugby pitches.

Indoors there is a 12-court sports hall, eight squash courts and a four-court sports hall. Other facilities available on the high-performance side of the centre include a hydrotherapy pool, a rehabilitation area and gym area for strength and conditioning.

We were involved with Bowmer and Kirkland over a long period of time assisting with the Design to ensure all the Doors were fit for a Live Sports Environment incorporating the necessary Rebound Panels. We also designed and installed a bespoke Oversized Doorset which was 3300mm wide x 3955mm high.