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Everyday Architecture

Hilltown Multis

A series of blocks of high rise flats built in 1966, the buildings are all 15-storeys high. These were built as public housing as part of the Dallfield central area development scheme in Hilltown.

The blocks consist of 336 homes in total. A council development, they were constructed by Scoton, and construction was approved by committee in 1964. The remaining Hilltown Multis are an iconic part of Dundee’s landscape today, as they stand boldly amongst tenements and low-rise housing.  

Known to most as simply ‘the multis’, their design was meant to revolutionise living, and initially people thought they were amazing. With astonishment at the sheer height of them, sitting boldly on Dundee’s skyline at the foot of the Hilltown, these buildings also brought community spirit and at first, they were in really high demand. It was hoped that housing like this would enable more homes in one building and allow slums to be cleared out faster. 

Unfortunately the revolutionary design wasn’t a cure-all for housing challenges. For many years, the vast buildings had no security and very little maintenance which led to crime, vandalism and the buildings becoming run down. There were initially 44 multis in the city and now we have just 11, but they’re still a big part of our housing story here in Dundee!

Research by Stephanie Crowe
Words by Poppy Jarratt
Illustration by Dana Ulama