The Most Iconic Modern Scottish Architecture

Renovation and preservation have always played an important role in Scottish architecture in recent years, including the Charles Rennie Mackintosh lighthouse in Glasgow. Who is now home to Scotland’s Center for Design and Architecture, or the magnificent glass-fronted Edinburgh Festival of Theater, which boasts the largest performance area in Scotland – second only to the Royal Opera House in the UK.

The banks of the River Clyde in Glasgow boast many eye-catching modern architectural masterpieces. Norman Foster’s Clyde Auditorium, which has earned the affectionate nickname ‘ The Armadillo ‘ in recent years, stands proudly across the river from the titanium-clad Glasgow Science Center.

Further west along the river we can find the iconic Glasgow Riverside Museum, designed by Iraqi architect Zaha Hadid, and the city’s Transport Home Museum. Officially unveiled in July 2011, the imposing structure already dominates the Glasgow skyline with its striking wave outline and clear glass facade.

In Edinburgh, the world-renowned Scottish Parliament building is situated at the bottom of the Royal Mile. The building was designed by the late architect of Catalan origin, Enric Miralles. He said to have been inspired by the surrounding landscape. The construction is a mix of steel, oak, and granite and was officially opened in 2004.

The National Museum of Scotland underwent a major refurbishment that restored the original splendor of the A Grade Victorian building which introduced new modern details such as wrought iron balconies and a soaring glass ceiling, which together created an impressive bird cage-style structure.

To the north of Dundee, we can find the Dundee Contemporary Arts Center: one of the most innovative modern spaces in the city.

The Maggie Center at Ninewells was architect Frank Gehry’s first building in the UK. The center, which provides support and care to people affected by cancer, was named ‘Building of the Year’ by the Royal Scottish Fine Arts Commission and was also nominated for the 2004 RIAS Andrew Doolan Prize for Architecture.