Pop Up Edinburgh

Konishi Gaffney won the competition to design and fabricate a Pavilion for the Expo Pop-Up Cities: Edinburgh.

Design Rationale

Our design is based on a folded origami form developed from thinking about the idea of a pop-up pavilion.

The form is made from two pyramids laid back to back with three openings “pulled out”: one for the door, one for a fixed window and one for an opening window for ventilation. This simple form is materially and structurally very efficient and easy to build.


The simple volume is built using truss-like triangular frames fabricated from locally sourced Scottish Larch. This timber frame would then be clad in Scottish Larch externally, panelised with a white ply and a high tech waterproof breather membrane in the sandwich panel.


Timber is an excellent material for this project. Locally sourced it allows very low transport mileage to site; it is breathable; it’s affordable; and its simple jointing requires non-specialist skills meaning a wide variety of local people can engage with the construction. A low carbon building, this material also allows us to lock in carbon to the build; the Pavilion will be re-used for other events by the client Edinburgh City Council. The proposed internal finish is a lime based whitewash – a natural, organic and low VOC paint that breathes and is repairable.

The competition was won with award winning structural engineers TALL engineers and the pavilion is being fabricated by local artist and craftsman Johannes Sailer.

Sponsors: cladding by Russwood | Timber by James Jones & Sons | Plywood by Lathams