V&A at Dundee proposals unveiled


Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

The Victoria and Albert Museum have announced the six proposals for a building to house the V&A on the Dundee waterfront in Scotland, including designs by Steven Holl Architects, Snøhetta and Delugan Meissl Associated Architects (above).

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: Steven Holl Architects. Click for larger image

Kengo Kuma & Associates, REX and Sutherland Hussey Architects were also invited to propose designs for the museum that aims to be the leading centre for design in Scotland.

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: Kengo Kuma and Associates. Click for larger image

All six proposals are currently on show in the V&A at Dundee - Making it Happen exhibition at the University of Abertay Dundee library until 4 November. Admission is free.

Here are more details from V&A at Dundee:

V&A AT DUNDEE - designs unveiled

Six stunning designs for the V&A at Dundee project have been unveiled at an exhibition in the city.

The `V&A at Dundee - Making it Happen’ exhibition features work from the six shortlisted teams of world-class architects and designers who have put forward outstanding ideas for a landmark building that will house the V&A at Dundee and dominate Dundee’s waterfront.

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: Snøhetta and Gareth Hoskins Architects. Click for larger image

Sir Mark Jones, Director of the Victoria & Albert Museum, expressed his excitement at the quality of the architects’ response to the brief by saying, “Fantastic designs from brilliant architects! Its great to see that the competition for the V&A at Dundee has attracted such a strong international response.”

“We have a range of designs that are very dynamic and exciting,” said Mike Galloway, Director of City Development for Dundee City Council, one of the partners in the V&A at Dundee project.

“Our shortlist features some of the brightest names in world architecture and design and I think they have shown with these designs why they are so highly rated. Our brief called for outstanding design to fit an outstanding location and I think the teams have lived up to that.”

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: REX. Click for larger image

The V&A at Dundee will be Scotland’s leading centre for design. Remarkable design requires a remarkable home, and the public are invited to get involved with shaping this project by giving their views on the proposals.

“These are fantastic designs and we hope as many people as possible visit the exhibition and the website and express their opinions on the models and designs,” said Lesley Knox, Chair of Design Dundee Ltd, the company which has been established to drive the V&A at Dundee project forward, and Chair of the jury panel who will select the winning design team.

“I am sure people will see things they really love and some will also have opinions that go the other way. But the key thing is that they make their opinions known, as it will feed into the jury panel’s decision.”

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: Sutherland Hussey Architects. Click for larger image

The exhibition is in the University of Abertay Dundee library in Bell Street, Dundee, from September 29th to November 4th. All are welcome to visit the exhibition and admission is free.

The V&A at Dundee is being delivered by Design Dundee Ltd, a ground-breaking partnership between the Victoria and Albert Museum - the world’s greatest museum of art and design - and the University of Dundee, the University of Abertay Dundee, Dundee City Council and Scottish Enterprise.

Victoria and Albert Museum Dundee

Above: Delugan Meissl Associated Architects. Click for larger image

The V&A at Dundee is looking to create a landmark building, which will be sited at Craig Harbour right on the banks of the River Tay. The site is being made available through the Dundee Central Waterfront Partnership, the joint venture between Dundee City Council and Scottish Enterprise which is revitalising the prime area of land linking the city centre with the River Tay.

Designers were invited to make proposals for a building that reflects the V&A at Dundee project partnership’s desire to stimulate commerce as well as local and visitor interest.

The V&A at Dundee will:

  • be a rich and inspiring resource for design and creativity.
  • attract visitors from Dundee, Scotland and further afield to world-class travelling and permanent exhibitions.
  • improve the attractiveness of Dundee and its region to business.

Opening hours for the exhibition will be: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9 am to 9 pm

Wednesday 9 am to 5 pm

Saturday - Sunday 10 am to 5 pm


Delugan Meissl

The design team led by Delugan Meissl includes Wenzel+Wenzel (Germany), Werner Sobek (Germany) and Büro Kiefer (Germany).

Kengo Kuma

Kengo Kuma’s team for the V&A project includes cre8architecture (Scotland), ARUP (UK), Optimised Environments Ltd (Scotland) and CBA (Scotland).


The REX design team for the V&A project includes RMJM (Scotland), Arch Henderson (Scotland), Buro Happold (Scotland/USA), DCI (USA), DHV (Netherlands), Hargreaves Associates (USA), Lord Cultural Resources (USA), Magnusson Klemencic Associates (USA), Tillotson Design Associates (USA), Transsolar (Germany), Turner & Townsend (Scotland), Urban Splash Group (UK) and 2x4 (USA).


The Snøhetta multidisciplinary team for the V&A project includes Gareth Hoskins Architects (UK), Lord Cultural Resources (Canada), Davis Langdon (Scotland), Adams Kara Taylor (UK) and the BDSP Partnership (UK).

Steven Holl

The design team led by Steven Holl includes jmarchitects (Scotland), Guy Nordenson & Associates (USA), ARUP (Scotland), Thomas & Adamson (Scotland), Michael van Valkenburgh Associates (USA) and Transsolar Energietechnik (Germany).

Sutherland Hussey

The V&A design team led by Sutherland Hussey includes 3DReid Architects (Scotland), AECOM (Scotland), Morham & Brotchie (Scotland), Gross Max (Scotland) and KSLD (Scotland).

The jury panel which decided on the shortlist was:

Lesley Knox (Chair)
Mike Galloway
Graeme Hutton - Dean of the School of Architecture, University of Dundee
Moira Gemmill - Director of Projects & Design, V&A
Jill Farrell - Regional Operations Director, Scottish Enterprise
Professor Nicholas Terry - Vice-Principal and Deputy Vice-Chancellor, University of Abertay Dundee
Jim Eyre - Wilkinson Eyre Architects

Posted on Tuesday September 28th 2010 at 5:24 pm by Brad Turner. Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Luca

    snohetta is my favourite

  • wpgmb

    Snohetta for sure.

    Steven Holl's proposal looks strikingly similar to his Casino Knokke project. Not cool at all.

  • oxo

    Steven Holl is not my favourite :)

  • snoehetta all the way. Who else reinvents himself depending on the place?

  • rac

    by arguemnt of scale, engaging waterscape, sense of entrance… snohetta it is!!

  • oli

    Well done Kengo Kuma!

  • The one on top (first pic) got me thinking about the computer from 'Hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy'.
    Snøhetta and Gareth Hoskins Architects is the best because it is modest to it's surroundings

  • I can't wait for the V&A, it will make such a difference to Dundee. Or at least I hope it does. It will be a real asset to the city and to the art school. And given I've been hearing about it's coming and gone to lectures about it since 2007 it's great to finally see some designs!

    Personally I like the designs by Snohetta and Kengo Kuma. However I think I need to go see the models & other graphics at Abertay and take a walk along the river and think about them in context. It's actually a nice view across the Tay and after the redevelopment of Riverside it should be even nicer down there, so the design needs to enhance that rather than engulf it.

    The river is one of the city's biggest assets…though ridding the view of some of the current architectural nightmares would be incredibly beneficial.

  • Nigel

    REX has had a shocker

  • noyz

    Sorry but i don't get this, years ago, and leaving aside neighbors objections, the V&L could not raise enough funds to build Libeskind's extension and now they propose a mega building during a world economic crisis. Explain it to me.

    Difficult to judge with only a pic per project but i'd choose Snøhetta and Gareth Hoskins Architects or Sutherland Hussey, at least these projects seem steroid free. The others look completely out of scale

  • showbiZ

    This is “Showbiz” architecture. Architecture from “Talkers”
    (The exclusion is proposal of Sutherland Hussey.
    This is not so talented architecture from “Traders”.)
    And where are the “Thinkers”?

  • jaume

    this is not architecture… this is just spectacle

    • …just as I said above this is not architecture but SHOWBIZ.
      none of them is "real architect" they are Talkers & Traders…

  • ARS

    All of them are dreadful. Poor seaside landscape! Is it really necessary?

  • sooooooooo bored by delugan meissl
    they always do the same!! mid 2000 shaping – a future fashion long past

  • MFA studios

    from these choices S/H or KKA….the later embracing the environment a bit more. But where are the designs that involve and interact with the environment instead of displacing it? it is water………one would think that element would be one of inspiration instead of neglect.

  • pass

    rex has shown his hyper rational re-united program while interacting with the surrounding.this is trully inventing the subject in itself without any inconvenient.

  • hdxtst

    In those kind of competitions it's hard to analyze with a single 3D picture the whole program. I would like to look more views from the entrance and some interiors as well.

    However, my vote goes for Kengo Kuma's project: It looks like an abstraction of a series of inverted sea waves that dialogues with the site.

    As modern architecture's history teach us, the so called SHOWBIZ projects, pays well in order to regenerate Tourism and as aditional atraction to the cities. (Guggenheim of Bilbao by Frank O. Gehry) It indeed, becomes a landmark.

    some thoughts of the other projects:

    1.-Delugan Meissl Associated's Project: (does someone recall this project with the house of music by Rem Koolhaas in Porto, Henning Larsen in Copenhagen?)

    2.-Steven Holl Architect's Project: The feeling of the scales looks authoritarian like russian's monumentalism of the deconstructivism era.

    3.-Snøhetta's Project: I like the modesty in its scale, kinda respectful to the site. It reminds me the Spanish fortifications such as Fort San Juan de Ulúa of the 19th century. I wonder if that humbleness is what the committee is looking for. I like it though.

    4.-the REX's Project (welcome to Superman's Fortress of Solitude) hehehe! looks great without any structural junctions for the facades of glass.

    5.-Sutherland Hussey's Project: (the basement is thought as breakwater which gives a notion of its site) I liked that.

    LET IT RUMBLE!!!!!

  • Kraus

    These all look identical.

    Additionally, none appear to have any suggestion of intermediate scale.

    All are large faceted gestures sheathed in some sort of mono-material skin.

    This direction is appearing everywhere and is growing very tired very quickly.

    Snohetta is extraordinarily over-rated.

  • Hairy

    Anyone else notice how samey looking most of these (except the Sutherland Hussey one) are – at least from the single shot provided? Surface patina, faceted formalism, or maybe also the strikingly similar render styles. Looks like variants from the same studio almost. Need more info!

  • Hairy

    Yep Kraus just saw your post – thank you. Very fashionable, but also becoming ubiquitous no?

  • flytoget

    Sutherland Hussey Architects have totally nailed it… Shocked by Snøhetta´s lack of reality check…. Haven´t they learnt anything from Margate?

  • douglas montgomery

    Whats wrong with spectacle? Humans respond well to, and indeed require, visual stimulus – even decoration… oh God, I just swore.

  • Richie

    Is there somewhere to find out more information about these proposals or are people here judging them based on a single image each?..

  • Mark

    REX proposal is smart and looks great

  • Edgar Demello

    Architectural ideas leading to spectacle is one thing… In reverse, one gets these tardy neo-fascist temples to arrogance. What happened to the river?

  • markus

    Snøhetta! Definitely the most respectful and intelligent proposal of them all!