Hydro Ness is a hydroelectric scheme and a flagship interpretive visitor experience on the River Ness and is now open to the public.
Visitor attraction designers, Mather & Co, worked alongside the Highland Council to design and develop interpretation within the hydroelectric scheme. Mather & Co’s role within the project was to create a site that offers educational information about the Hydro, climate change and other important topics for visitors and school groups. It is hoped this will contribute to their STEM learning – showing young enthusiasts a practical example of green engineering that can help contribute to a better Highland.
Malissa Geersing, Senior Project Designer at Mather & Co said: “It has been an honour to work with the team on the interpretive design of the Hydro Ness project, which illustrates the power of the river promoting sustainability and helps to inspire future generations.”
Mather & Co has developed an interpretive experience through the new landscaped area, which includes crafted benches, interpretive panels, lighting, a tree grate around the ‘jubilee tree’ and interpretation for the buried time capsule. The Hydro Ness will provide an engaging experience for all ages, using interpretation to promote several key messages across the site.
Martin MacDonald, Hydro Ness Project Manager said: “The interpretive content is such a vital part of this project – we felt the nature of the setting and incredible steel structure demanded high quality interpretation to help articulate key messaging. The content has really elevated the site and enhanced a fantastic and accessible green space. We are really grateful for the creativity and enthusiasm Mather & Co have brought to the project.”
The hydroelectric scheme will generate electricity using a hydro turbine to power approximately 50% of the electricity use at Inverness Leisure Centre. Hydro Ness showcases how science and nature can work together to make the world a better place and to encourage visitors to think about their personal impact on the environment. Hydro Ness is now open to the public.