Project: Riverside Museum: Scotland's Museum of Travel and Transport in Glasgow
Sara Pepitone -- Interior Design, 8/1/2012 3:36:00 PM
Project: Riverside Museum: Scotland's Museum of Travel and Transport
Location: Glasgow, Scotland
Architect: Zaha Hadid Architects
Opened: June 2011
Size: 122,000 square fee
The Riverside Museum: Scotland's Museum of Travel and Transport stands on the site of a former shipyard on the banks of the River Clyde in Glasgow, Scotland. The wave-shaped exterior by Zaha Hadid Architects opens both to the river and the city itself, and is column-free in between like a sectional extrusion, open at opposing ends along a diverted linear path, says Hadid.
"A very interesting work of modern architecture and the system of small island exhibits makes changes easy and less costly," said the European Museum Academy judges who awarded Glasgow's Riverside Museum as the Best Science, Technical, Industrial Museum 2012. "The museum has put its budget and its large workforce to excellent use, it is completely publicly oriented, flexible and always on the lookout."
Often in new museum building the architecture tends to dominate the project visually and financially, comments Paul Weston, former Design Manager. "Frequently the exhibition design deliberately defers to the architect's desire to keep the exuberance of the displays in check," Weston says. However, at Riverside, Weston made an effort to assign architect and the exhibit designer equal weight, aiming for equal value in every element of the museum.
In the end, the presentation of content matched the architectural ambition. Not surprisingly, then, Riverside has also won awards for "Best Customer Experience" and "Scotland's Favourite Visitor Attraction."
No doubt the ability to climb aboard vintage public transportation such as trains and trams helps keep everyone entertained as they explore the museum's 98 interactive exhibits. A re-creation of a street from the 1900s, with a café, pub, subway station, and pawnshop, is a favorite.
The museum's flexibility quite specifically refers to the ability to "push and pummel" interiors to accommodate any given exhibit, or object within. They have more than 3,000, including 63 automobiles. That's more than twice as many as their predecessor - the Museum of Transport, which closed in 2010. And no one is looking back.