Project description

This project focuses on the afterlife of the deprived mining community of Buckhaven, Fife with an emphasis on ground regeneration and reuse.

Located in Buckhaven this coastal site was left derelict and abandoned after the closure of Wellesley colliery which was once a source of wealth for the community. In effort to bring social regeneration to the area the new proposal contains a public building with multifunctional spaces and educational facilities.

Through repurposing spoiled ground and waste materials from the coalmining industry a thoroughly sustainable material system has been established within this environmental community centre. The ability to reuse the site’s gravel filled ground as aggregate and fly-ash (a mining waste product) as cement to create a sustainable concrete is extremely specific to the site’s historical past.

The project seeks to connect the local community back to their historical roots as well as the water’s edge after a long history of urbanisation. With a responsibility to create sustainable built environments the ecology of the site is regenerated through creation of a sand dune ecosystem which the building harmoniously settles in, considering topographic changes to combat future flooding and coastal erosion preserving the coastal town of Buckhaven. The community and proposed building are linked by timber elevated walkways leaving the ground untouched and treated as sacred.

Ground Reuse | Vault and Walkway

The ground has become a part of the architectural language and the architectural language an extension of the ground. Therefore architecturally it was essential to distinguish the structural concrete vaults from the timber walkway and floors in which people would walk upon. The timber walkway is used as a device to guide people through the site and community building towards the ocean.

Ground Material Reuse Diagram
Buckhaven Remains | Ground Material Reuse Diagram
Environmental Strategies

With a strong passion for environmental strategies, I wanted to incorporate passive design methods to help combat the affects new builds have on the environment. Ensuring appropriate thermal comfort within the building by best ecological means was essential to fulfil the brief.

Environmental Strategies Diagram
Buckhaven Remains | Environmental Strategies
Topography Changes | Ground Regeneration

Not long after the site became in use as a coal mine did the coastline begin to erode dramatically. The solution to this at the time seemed to be a temporary one through dumping gravel onto site and extending the shore line offering more space to land and infratructure. This method is a hard-engineering solution which can often be more detrimental. 

The ecological solution my project proposes is one which revives the site ecologically through excavating the post-mined site of its spoiled gravel to reuse in concrete mix and in the hollowed out landscape, restoring a natural ecosystem that already exists elsewhere along the east coast of Scotland.

Furthermore, the establishment of a sand dune ecosystem and forest land addresses the programmatic desires of the local community whilst also achieving protection from future flooding and erosion.

Landscape Section
Buckhaven Remains | Landscape Sectional Change
Skills & Experience
  • Deutscher Architecture, Canada BC. Intern to lead architect Jeremiah. Main tasks include 3D modelling and creating and editing drawings.
  • Rhinoceros | Revit | SketchUp | AutoCAD
  • InDesign | Illustrator | Photoshop | Procreate
  • Hand drafting and modelling | Digital Fabrication | Lazer Cutting
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