Celebrations in Edinburgh
UK - The Lennox Suite, an extension to the Edinburgh International Conference Centre (EICC), celebrated a star-studded grand opening on 2 May 2013, unveiling flexible staging solutions designed and specified by Theatre Projects in collaboration with The Right Solution and architects BDP.

Built in the heart of Edinburgh's West End and surrounded by some of Scotland's most prestigious financial institutions, space for this events space was at a premium. Added to this challenge, the design team were required to make the new space fully integrated with the EICC's existing facilities. This required a much greater level of coordination and communication with the rest of the design team than usual, but this suited Theatre Projects' collaborative style perfectly.

What makes The Lennox Suite different is its fully automated moving floor. Theatre Projects designed an innovative engineering solution for the floor system, which easily transforms the room from a flat floor events space to a tiered auditorium.

Tom Davis, project leader for Theatre Projects, explains, "The Lennox Suite can be used in a variety of seating and staging configurations, and can also be split into two or three smaller spaces. Primarily intended as a complimentary multipurpose hall to the EICC's existing conference venues, this space can transform the room from a 1,600m2 flat floor exhibition space, to a 2,000-seat auditorium, a 1,400-seat arena, a banqueting suite for 1,400 guests, or almost anything else that takes your imagination."

There's also a tension wire grid that spans the entire space, allowing technicians to reconfigure the lighting and sound systems (designed and specified by Theatre Projects) while the floor lifts are in simultaneous use below. This gives the EICC an operational edge by greatly reducing the down-time between events, while also avoiding many of the dangers of working at height.

The Lennox Suite's tension wire grid and moving floor are among the largest and most ambitious of their types in the world.

(Jim Evans)

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