McEwan Hall is one of Edinburgh’s most prestigious buildings, and is well known as the graduation hall of the University of Edinburgh. A Grade A listed building that was presented to the university in 1897 by William McEwan, a brewer and politician.
Being over 100 years old, the building presented significant challenges; a tight working space and the delicate nature of the building were just two of them.
The staircase had been designed to wrap around the lift shaft, and in order to plan this accurately Edwards built a scale model of the staircase before work began to fabricate the full staircase.
The bulk of the staircase was manufactured at Edwards’ Perth site and then assembled in McEwan Hall. Over 46 tonnes of steel were moved into the prestigious hall, so our engineers had to ensure that the fabric of the building remained strong and intact – this was extremely challenging in the very tight installation area and working with multiple contractors on site.
Edwards successfully completed the project on time for last year’s July graduation where the staff, graduates and their families were able to enjoy the beautifully lit staircase. The refurbishment of the Hall has transformed it into a flexible, multipurpose venue that can be used by the university and the people of Edinburgh all year round.
Graeme Marshall, Operations Manager of Interserve, Edwards key partners in the project, said: "It was great to work with Edwards Engineering on the fabrication and installation of the centrepiece staircase at Edinburgh University's McEwan Hall. The project was to a demanding specification and installation conditions were tight. The team at Edwards handled these obstacles with great skill and professionalism whilst attaining a high level of quality and in an organised an efficient manner."