‘Joy to the skaters of Bristo Squircle’: The Scandi Bar is finally being demolished

One student told us: ‘I could not be happier that that abomination will be gone’

The temporary study space in Bristo Square – affectionately known as the Scandi Bar – is being dismantled.

Builders are currently removing the windows and side panels of it and the inside appears to be completely gutted.

The news was first posted on The Meadows Chat Facebook group with the caption: “the needless monstrosity is finally being removed! Joy to the skaters of Bristo Squircle”.

The Edinburgh Tab spoke to students about the decision. One fourth year told us: “my friends and I are doing grad pics next week outside McEwan Hall and I could not be happier that that abomination will be gone”.

The Scandi Bar was first built in September 2020 and opened the following month.

It was designed to give students more social and study space to make up for the amount of uni buildings that were out of bounds due to the pandemic.

In an email, Edinburgh Uni VP Colm Harmon told students: “I am thrilled that we are able to offer our students these welcoming, covered areas to enjoy when they are on campus this year. As numbers within our buildings are greatly reduced, we felt that it was important to provide them with space in which they can safely relax and chat with friends in between classes.”

At the time, students weren’t too keen on the idea – with 71% in an Edinburgh Tab Instagram poll declaring it an “eyesore”.

The Edinburgh Tab also visited and reviewed the big blue Bristo cube last semester. Our reviewer found it was empty, so cold it slowed down her typing, and “definitely not worth the couple million Edi Uni spent on it”.

It was open for most of Semester One but the winter lockdown in Scotland meant it was unable to reopen for most of Semester Two.

However, the Scandi Bar didn’t even reopen when lockdown restrictions were eased at the end of April to allow indoor hospitality to reopen without alcohol.

So, if students couldn’t use the space, it seems only right that it’s returned to its previous inhabitants: the Bristo Square skater boys. Nature is well and truly healing.

Recommended related articles by this writer

• ‘My eyes are bleeding’: Edi students react to two storey pop up cafe on Bristo square

• A very honest review of the Bristo Square Scandi Bar

• Edinburgh University lectures expected to still be online next year