Royal Conservatoire of Scotland


The Alexander Gibson Opera School is a four storey 30,000 ft2 building which houses an Opera Studio and support accommodation for teaching, coaching and rehearsing operatic skills. The Opera Studio is designed to meet the requirements of a recording studio and will facilitate outside broadcast of performances.

The main factors influencing the design of the building services installations were the need for exceptional acoustic qualities and energy efficiency.

The building was designed to operate without the need for mechanical cooling. Full fresh air ventilation systems serve all areas using low velocity displacement ventilation terminals. The ventilation rate to each room is varied automatically according to occupancy levels. A measure of cooling of the incoming fresh air is provided by non-mechanical energy efficient adiabatic coolers within the air handling plant.

Heating is provided throughout the building by thermostatically controlled low temperature hot water radiators.

Lighting installations include dimmable lighting in rehearsal rooms, dimmable front of house lights within the general areas, display lighting for art presentations within the atrium, galleries and stage and house and rehearsal lighting within the Opera Studio.

Other services within the building include performance monitoring CCTV, audio-visual conference facilities and in-house radio and television installations.

All building services installations have been designed to meet the strict acoustic criteria set by the Acoustic Consultant and include isolation of services on a room by room basis independent acoustic testing of components and the incorporation of specialist acoustic penetration details.

KJ Tait provided the following services:

  • Mechanical & Electrical Design
  • Design of the acoustic performance of the mechanical and electrical services
  • Sustainability Advice


The Arts