Jacobite, Loch Ness

Jacobite Cruises has appointed Glasgow-based Cameron Webster Architects to build the £2.3 million Jacobite Discovery project after a four-way design competition.

The idea is to create a dramatic building highly visible from the road, which addresses and is integrated with the geology, natural features and topography of the landscape, provides spectacular views if the loch, and is easily accessible from the car park. The building offers a relaxed glazed route down to the mossy burn, waterfalls and the underpass by lifts or stairs, and a café that enjoys panoramic views to the loch is located above the offices and double height retail area.

We propose to build a covered route beside the retaining wall/rock face around the back of the car park, which leads directly into the building and down to the burn. Steps up through the rock lead to picnic places and viewpoints further up the hill, encouraging visitors to explore the landscape, flora and fauna of the area, and forming access routes to the shop and café for walkers on the Great Glen Way to the north.

A further idea is that on the shore side of the road, the new pier and harbour should have an entirely glazed viewing point at water level, and that other walkways, small seating areas and picnic spots are subtly and sensitively formed along the edge of the loch, to allow visitors to appreciate its natural quiet beauty