Aberdeen’s cityscape may undergo a transformation as eight prominent tower blocks, including well-known structures like Marischal Court and Hutcheon Court, are under consultation for potential demolition.

Aberdeen City Council has launched a comprehensive consultation to gather feedback from residents and property owners about the fate of these eight high rises. This move, seen by many in the industry as a golden opportunity for developers, is influenced by the age and declining condition of some of these buildings.

The buildings in question include Marischal Court, Virginia Court, Seamount Court, Porthill Court, Greig Court, Hutcheon Court, Thistle Court, and Gilcomstoun Land. Residents and property owners are presented with five distinct proposals, detailing various levels of investment possibilities for the high rises, from minimal refurbishments to total demolition.

The council’s proactive approach ensures that the community is deeply involved in the decision-making process. Apart from the online survey, scheduled drop-in sessions provide a platform for residents and owners to engage directly with council representatives and The Tenant Participation Advisory Service Scotland (TPAS). These interactions aim to offer clarity on the available options and assist attendees in filling out the survey forms.

Councillor Miranda Radley, convener of the Aberdeen City Council Communities, Housing and Public Protection Committee, emphasised the critical nature of this consultation, stating, “The homes and futures of many Aberdeen residents are at the forefront of this process. Their active participation, whether through the drop-in sessions or online engagement, is paramount.”

The varied options laid out in the consultation span from low to high levels of investment in the buildings, with a notable choice being complete demolition. This thorough approach follows the committee’s decision in January 202 significant to review the Housing Revenue Account’s non-traditional housing stock. The objective was to identify properties that might not meet upcoming environmental or other crucial standards.

Interestingly, a few of these buildings had been categorised by Historic Environment Scotland in 2021 as instances of ‘brutalist’ architecture. However, an appeal by the council led to the removal of Thistle, Hutcheon, and Greig Court structures from this list.

The financial implications of the potential decisions are substantial. Early estimates project a cost of £480,000 to modernise each flat over a span of thirty years. In contrast, demolition or replacement per flat is estimated at up to £450,000.

The consultation, available on the streets-UK website, will remain open until November 10. All feedback will be meticulously analysed, shared with the concerned residents and owners, and will then form the basis of a detailed report for the Communities, Housing and Public Protection Committee. This entire exercise is poised to reshape Aberdeen’s architectural landscape and presents a promising avenue for developers in the city.