Wavegarden Surf Lagoon: A Year of Coasts and Waters Case Study

Submitted by: HarrisonStevens

Cold water surfing in Scotland is a popular activity and is gaining a worldwide reputation for the quality of its waves. Many of the top surfers regard Scotland’s North Shores and Islands as having some of the world’s greatest waves. The East Coast is also home to some of the most consistent small-wave spots in Europe, making it an ideal place to learn. However, until recently, Scotland was not revered as a surf destination, but wetsuit technology in recent years has changed everything with the cold water environment no-longer a barrier.

A Wavegarden® is a unique surfing environment which creates an genuine ocean simulation. The system delivers high quality, authentic waves creating ideal conditions for surfing and other surf sports in a safe training and schooling environment. It is therefore an attractive environment for all skill levels from beginners to professional surfers.

Wavegarden® Scotland will be located at the former Craigpark Quarry, Ratho, to the west of Edinburgh, with excellent transport links nationally and beyond. The Surf Cove and associated food and facilities Hub is situated within a proposed 26 ha country park. The former quarry is a challenging site but primed with habitat potential fuelled by the adjacent Union Canal corridor. Creating landscapes that will be healthy, nature rich and resilient to climate change, the objectives include the creation of meadows, gorse/heather land, woodland, aquatic/marginal habitats and reinforcing existing woodland corridors interwoven with over 5KM of trails. Strategic landmark tree planting is located at key nodes and entrances within the site allowing for orientation and wayfinding. On site accommodation is provided for with luxury lodges, smaller glamping pods and moored canal barges. Landscape maintenance and legacy have been designed in from an early stage with successional establishment of habitat and landscape typologies linked across the entire site.

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