Shumael Amir

From Close to Open

As many early settlements follow the pattern of the city around the castle, Edinburgh carved its own urban plan; situating the city around one long strip of avenue. As such the Royal Mile became the main artery of social and architecture infrastructure, running along the ridge and curating its culture. However, standing on centuries of history and building layers, the Royal Mile today holds no experiential or communal value. A shrine to tourists and an empty shell of what it once was, the Mile has become an attraction for visitors and lacks social relevance with limited access and its capitalistic approach. As Edinburgh progresses on with urban growth and architectural innovation, the Royal Mile dissociates further from the city’s significance. The Royal Mile must become a space for the Edinburgh culture, a playground of further exploration and social necessities integrated into its medieval framework. The intensity of the city must be brought back to this artery by carving heritage for contemporary culture.

Toronto Metropolitan Department of  Architectural Science Toronto, CA.