Westfield Student Accommodation

Westfield Student Accommodation

Proteus HR
Fletcher Joseph Associates

A new 396-bedroom student accommodation building in the west of Edinburgh city centre has become the latest project to benefit from aluminium cladding panels manufactured by Proteus Facades

The £20.4m Westfield Road project in the heart of Edinburgh’s western district comprises of seven storeys, with Proteus HR crowning off the upper level. The project in Golgie, which was built on the site of an unused office and car showroom, offers a variety of enriching experiences onsite, including an open-air private courtyard to the rear, rain gardens, onsite gym, 24-hour reception, games room and an ‘activated’ façade at street level. This is achieved via the strategic placement of communal amenity areas along Westfield Road and Westfield Avenue together with large format glazed screens, which ultimately will have a progressive influence on the wider area. Its location provides the occupants with a space close to all the primary university campuses, Arthur’s Seat, Edinburgh Castle, and for those sports fans, Murrayfield Stadium is across the road. The structure represents a seamless fusion of contemporary design and a tribute to the neoclassical elegance found in Edinburgh’s New Town architecture. Embracing the uniformity and classical elements emblematic of Georgian architecture, this project pays homage to the city’s heritage while forging ahead in urban development.

Westfield student accommodation is a singular block designed to deliver an inspiring vision. The overall design was developed with the surrounding context in mind and was achieved by creating several datum lines which sympathetically respond to the neighbouring buildings. A pivotal element in achieving this synthesis of tradition and innovation was the application of Proteus HR 1.0mm pre-coated aluminium with Arconic Bronze Metallic and Arconic Silver Grey. The use of aluminium cladding allowed Fletcher Joseph Associates to get a naturally beautiful facade which resembled Scots slate and created a living surface that dances with the interplay of natural and artificial light. This deliberate design philosophy creates a warm and inviting ambience, which is crucial for evoking a sense of comfort and belonging, especially for students seeking a home away from home.

Pre-Finished Aluminium

The installation of Proteus HR aluminium cladding, orchestrated by DNF Roofing & Cladding in partnership with Graham Construction, emerged as a defining aspect of the building’s current appeal and has become a key feature of the building’s design as it gives a sleek and modern look, while also providing excellent protection from the elements.

Proteus HR is a market leading rainscreen cladding system that comprises an aluminium honeycomb core that has been structurally bonded between two thin gauges of lightweight metal skin. Proteus HR rainscreen cladding system is available in a wide range of materials and finishes, including aluminium, bronze, copper, brass, zinc, stainless steel, and various other options; which gives complete design freedom and can significantly enhance the visual aesthetic of a project. Fletcher Joseph Associates specified aluminium on this project for its adaptability and showcased its prowess by accommodating various designs while demanding minimal upkeep.

Not only does pre-coated aluminium enhance the visual appeal, but it also provides robust protection against diverse weather conditions. Its PvdF painted finish is highly corrosion resistant and highly resistant to fading, ensuring longevity and low maintenance—a crucial consideration in student accommodation settings. The exterior of the building adheres to the high standards of quality materials expected in the current trend for student living. That’s why our Proteus HR system with a pre-coated aluminium veneer has been tested in accordance with EN13501, achieving a fire rating of A2-s1, d0.

Approaching Difficulties

Overcoming challenges inherent in construction, particularly the constraints of tight site access and close proximity to the railway, speaks volumes about the project’s commitment to meticulous planning and execution, culminating in a product that epitomizes precision and excellence.

Project Manager Ben Howard stated that “an issue from a client perspective, was that the main elevation was on a main road and was therefore on the critical path for completion. We had to expedite this elevation to ensure that Graham construction were able to strike the scaffold in this area in time to avoid any delay costs. Due to the coordinated communication between Proteus and DNF, we were able to complete this project on time with minimal disruption to the surrounding areas”.

Beacon of Innovation

Westfield Road was completed in the Summer of 2022 and is now set to appeal widely to students who choose Edinburgh for their university studies. The impressive Westfield Road project redevelopment signifies a new and exciting future for a part of Edinburgh.  Beyond its functional brilliance, it is poised to captivate students seeking an immersive academic journey amidst the vibrant tapestry of Edinburgh’s cultural and architectural legacy. As a beacon of innovative design, this development stands tall, reflecting the city’s commitment to progressive, forward-thinking architectural endeavours.


  • Bronze Metallic Cladding
  • Silver Anodised cladding
  • Pre coated aluminium