MacRobert Building Project - update

MacRobert Building Project - update

Over the last two months, the University has been exploring options for the future use of the MacRobert Building to accommodate ambitious plans to expand the Business School while maintaining quality learning space and associated facilities for other users. A Programme Board comprising relevant Heads of School, with representation from AUSA and led by Vice-Principal Professor Alan Speight, has been giving consideration to the options and possibilities available.

To inform these deliberations, a detailed scoping exercise has been undertaken by consultants Turner and Townsend. This has identified a variety of options in line with our ambition to provide a world-class learning environment for the Business School, where students, staff and practitioners can work collaboratively on projects that positively impact society. These options have undergone a detailed assessment using a rigorous set of criteria, to ensure the project meets the University’s strategic aims. These criteria include the impact on student and staff experience, school identity, cost and sustainability.  

Following detailed consideration of the options and their assessment against the criteria, the Programme Board will likely recommend that the preferred option involves the relocation of the Business School from MacRobert to an entirely new home at the heart of campus.

This would see the Business School move to the currently dormant Johnston Central and Johnston Halls site, with a new pavilion created for the School on the site of the existing Johnston Pavilion and the refurbishment of Johnston Halls to create office accommodation and teaching space. The School of Education, Department of Music, Elphinstone Institute, and other current users would remain within MacRobert, and options will be explored to make best use of the space vacated by the Business School.

This option has been identified as offering the most benefit in terms of meeting our strategic aims, while breathing new life into the heart of campus. The Programme Board’s recommendation will be taken forward formally and considered by the relevant University committees, including the Capital Programme Management Committee, before being presented to the Operating Board and University Court.

The University remains mindful of the need for staff to be informed of any plans that may affect them, and will continue to provide updates where appropriate. In  the meantime anyone with any questions should email