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Discussion Starter #1
Received this yesterday.
Looks like the Council & Forth Ports have put aside their differences regarding the harbour and development areas then thrashed out a plan.

Also hearing some strange rumour of a Cruise Ship terminal at Newhaven of all places.. (Where would all the busses and people go?)


 

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Edinburgh Waterfront



Background from Wikipedia:
Edinburgh Waterfront is a redevelopment of parts of Edinburgh along the shores of the Firth of Forth in Leith and Granton. There are three main landowners: Arcus (formerly Forth Ports), National Grid plc and City of Edinburgh Council. Since the area was masterplanned in the early 2000s it has undergone significant change with approximately 1400 new homes in the Granton area and 900 in Leith, 41,000 square metres (440,000 sq ft) of retail development at Ocean Terminal, new food retail stores at both Leith and Granton, the new Telford College at Granton, and approximately 16,000 square metres (170,000 sq ft) of commercial office space.

Decontamination has also been carried out across Edinburgh Waterfront and land reclaimed at Western Harbour for future delivery of housing. A new road, Waterfront Avenue, has been constructed at Granton along with a 110 acres (45 ha) public park as part of National Grid’s Forthquarter development.

Following the recession of 2008 a new Area Development Framework has been prepared by the planning authority reflecting a flexible approach to future development. Some of the existing business uses including Leith Docks will continue for the foreseeable future providing much needed employment in the area. The Waterfront will provide a mix of uses and already houses the Scottish Government Office at Victoria Quay. Leith will be the location of the first projects in the UK to be funded by Tax Incremental Finance; the use of future non-domestic rateable income to finance capital projects.

Tourism remains an important sector in the local economy with the Royal Yacht Britannia attracting 500,000 visitors each year and a new waterside promenade already started which will link the river Almond at Cramond to the Esk at Joppa allowing access to 18 kilometres of walkway/cycleway.

Principal Development Areas

______________________________________________________________________________________________


ForthQuarter
Granton | Mixed-use development

110 acres

2,000 homes
55,750 sq m of office and retail space
£70 million 33,000 sq m college campus

Status: Under construction - approximately 800 homes built





______________________________________________________________________________________________


Granton Harbour
Granton | New urban quarter

80 acres

3400 homes
10,000 sq m of retail space
7,000 sq m commercial space
120-room hotel
Marina

Status: Under construction - approximately 300 homes built





______________________________________________________________________________________________


Granton Central Development Area & North Shore
Granton | Mixed-use development

85 acres

3,000 homes
184,000 sq m of office space
35,000 sq m of cultural space
16,300 sq m of leisure space
3,200 sq m of light industrial space

Status: Under construction - approximately 300 homes built





______________________________________________________________________________________________


Western Harbour
Newhaven | New urban quarter

90 acres

3,000 homes
37,000 sq m of commercial and retail space

Status: Under construction - approximately 1000 homes built





______________________________________________________________________________________________


The Harbour: Leith Docks
Leith | Mixed-use development

130 acres

2 'urban villages' – Britannia Quay and Waterfront Plaza

1,870 new homes
162 serviced apartments
5 hotels totalling 65,000 sq m (1,100 rooms)
100,000 sq m of office space
30,000 sq m of retail space
10,500 sq m of leisure and cultural space
Deep water cruise liner terminal & HMY Britannia visitor centre
Marina

Status: On hold





______________________________________________________________________________________________


Abandoned Proposal - Leith Docks: Forthside





The scheme would have seen the entire regeneration of Leith Docks, with the creation of nine 'urban villages', comprising 18,000 homes and over 1m sq ft of commercial space. The project was masterplanned by RMJM.

Plans for development on the northern and eastern docks have now been abandoned - though proposals for two of the 'urban villages' remain (see The Harbour: Leith Docks above) - instead the land will remain for industrial use, with the docks serving as a support and construction base for the off-shore renewable energy industry.
 

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Water chiefs ordered to end ‘Seafield stench’

Edinburgh Evening News - 26th August, 2014

Water chiefs have been ordered to bring an end to the notorious “Seafield stench”.

Councillors have demanded that Scottish Water invests in an “engineering solution” to the chronically smelly waste treatment plant.

Residents blasted “third-world technology” at the site, claiming that sewage plants across Europe had covered tanks as standard, while Seafield’s remain open.

City councillors were today set to approve a report demanding further investment to solve the odour problem during a meeting of the environment committee. The report also calls on council officials to examine whether the plant is breaching planning rules by allowing smells to escape, and has ordered the first-ever air testing at the border of the treatment plant.

Robert Kirkwood, of the Leith Links Residents’ Association, compared a policy of using wind direction to decide when to clean the tanks with “Russian roulette”.

He said: “During the cleaning of these tanks, when the wind changes, we’ve been engulfed in clouds of hydrogen sulfide for four to five hours.

“We’ve always argued that is not an engineering solution to a very significant problem in the community, but Scottish Water has persisted with this ‘Russian roulette’ procedure.

“This report requests an engineering solution and that’s a significant step for us. Scottish Water are being told that they’ve got to come up with a solution that works.”

Mr Kirkwood added: “We’ve got a third-world sewage treatment plant in one of the most prestigious cities in Europe, and it regularly stinks up the whole of Edinburgh with the smell of excrement.”

Environment convener Councillor Lesley Hinds said it was now time for Scottish Water to act.

She said: “Scottish Water need to tell us what the alternatives are, whether it’s reducing the number of tanks, changing the way they clean them, or some other mechanism.

“The number of complaints have gone down, but it’s still not at the level that the community wants.”

A Scottish Water spokesman said: “A £20 million odour improvement plan was completed in the summer of 2011, as well as a multi-million project to construct a new inlet works and replace coarse and fine screens.

“A new facility is also being constructed within the site to process sludge, helping to generate renewable energy and result in fewer lorry movements in and out of the works.”
 

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Plans to transform Leith Docks into a 21st Century Port revealed

STV Edinburgh - 15th October, 2014

Secret blueprints for Leith Docks reveal big changes ahead for the port.

The plans, obtained by Freedom of Information request from Scottish Enterprise, show the extent of the work that needs to be done to transform the privately owned port.

They show that large areas of land need to be reclaimed from the sea in order for larger ships to be able to berth.

If the plans ever go ahead, the proposals estimate the investment could create 1181 new jobs, in addition to the 800-strong existing workforce at the docks.

But officials, who have already spent £2.5m of tax-payer cash to draw up a new blueprint for the docks, have admitted that the transformation of the port has 'not progressed as quickly as first anticipated.'


The new berth for large ships


The proposals focus around the creation of a huge new tidal berth so that large modern cruise liners and ships suitable for servicing giant offshore wind turbines can load and unload at Leith.

The area hatched in green indicates where the new berth for larger ships will be built. It will allow large ships to berth, unrestricted by the narrow lock gates that currently prevents them from entering the existing docks.

However, the plans acknowledge that moves to extend the port will affect residents of the newer flats on Western Harbour.

Explaining the impact if the plans become reality, researchers conclude: "The noise during operations is considered to be potentially significant at the north eastern end of the Western Harbour Development closest to the proposed development.

"This is primarily due to noise from berthed vessels, both their power generators and noise from shipboard cranes loading/unloading."


Demolishing listed buildings


As part of the plans, the B-Listed Imperial Grain Silo could be demolished.

It once played a central role in the docks as grain was once the port's main import. Now it lies unused, although the building still dominates views of the docks.

And 4.9 hectares of the historic Edinburgh Dock, which is also listed, could be filled in, in a bid to create more space for commercial buildings.


Dredging the Firth of Forth


In order to reclaim all this land, the blueprints show that rock and gravel would be dredged up from the 'Middle Bank' in the Firth of Forth, from the areas shown in the map above.


But where is the private cash?

It is hoped that this work will unlock investment from offshore wind turbine manufacturer Gamesa, who are already have an option to build a factory on the site.

But to date, private investment from the Spanish firm, and indeed from the site owners Forth Ports, has not been forthcoming despite the millions invested so far under the banner of the National Renewables Infrastructure Plan.

Local councillors have previously blamed the hold-up of Leith Docks investment on 'Westminster dithering' over the price the government will be willing to guarantee for offshore wind power.

After the release of the secret plans last week, a joint statement released by Scottish Enterprise, Forth Ports Ltd and Edinburgh City Council admitted that progress has been slow, even though the Scottish Government has given planning consent for the development of a huge offshore wind farm in the North Sea, between the Firth of Forth and the Firth of Tay.

The statement said: “Since the publication of the National Renewables Infrastructure Plan (NRIP) in 2010 we, along with range of partners and port operators across Scotland, have continued to drive forward and accelerate infrastructure development at key sites to ensure we’re fully prepared to exploit the upcoming offshore wind opportunities.

“Leith has the potential to support offshore wind developments, however, it is widely recognised that the industry has not progressed as quickly as first anticipated. Whilst there are a number of projects in development which could utilise Leith, market conditions mean these will develop over a longer period of time.

“However, we are continuing to progress consents and work up detailed proposals for a range of port infrastructure enhancements at ports across Scotland, including Leith.

“The Port of Leith remains a vibrant and busy port bringing skilled employment opportunities and significant economic benefit and it continues to be in a strong position to accommodate offshore renewable energy operations in line as the sector develops.

“Leith is growing and supporting a number of key industries in Scotland, in particular North Sea oil and gas, agriculture, construction projects and the cruise liner industry.

"As these industries involve shipping goods as close as possible to their point of consumption or use, the port is also supporting the lowering of carbon emissions. Within this overall framework, we will also work to continue to support emerging industries such as renewables using Leith’s infrastructure, skills base and expertise.”


The £2.5m blueprints

Scottish Enterprise have supplied redacted documents to STV as part of a Freedom of Information request.

1 - The draft Development Framework sets out some of the key elements of the new plans for the docks.
2 - The non-technical Environmental Statement sets out some of the key environmental impacts that the proposals could have.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Should be interesting what residents have to say to this seeing they bought into the area thinking it was to be totally residential.

The Harbour allowed the property to be built that close and allowed more to be approved even closer to entrance so they now have to live with the consequences of that. Small tugs are audible even from the furthest WHD development (Platinum Point) so on the grounds of sound I can't see any resident allowing development of land closer to the properties.
 

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The council needs to seriously consider forcing the hand of Forth Ports - with the backing of The Scottish Government - to get it to at least tidy up the current terminal area. It's turned into a bit of a disgrace of an area. Surprising considering the fact that its the first port of call for tourists and the council tends to bend over backwards for that particular group.
 

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I hope that if this goes ahead the tram link to Newhaven is revived. If not there is going to be serious gridlock on Leith Walk and other roads in the area.
 

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400 affordable new homes plan

Edinburgh Evening News - 7th November, 2014

Hundreds of affordable homes will be built on vacant sites across the Capital including the Waterfront and former school campuses.

The £50 million project means the size of the city’s 21st Century Homes scheme – currently building 1400 private and affordable properties at six locations in Edinburgh – is set to increase by more than a quarter.

Craigmillar is among the areas earmarked for a swathe of new affordable properties although development sites have not been formally confirmed.

Development at the Waterfront is long overdue after plans to create 30,000 properties were shelved in the wake of the credit crunch and the 
decision to abandon the tram line to Leith.

It is thought the house-building project will be completed within the next five years and will help to reduce the pressure on the housing stock.

Currently, there are more than 130 applications for every council house that becomes available.

At least 700 jobs will be created with several Lothian firms *benefiting from lucrative building contracts.

Housing leader Cllr Cammy Day said the project would not only create hundreds of jobs but bring around £85 million to the Edinburgh economy. And he said the move would help “regenerate the Waterfront”.

“We need to build around 1600 affordable homes a year to meet demand and for every council house there are more than 100 bids,” he said.

If approved, the homes would be funded through a range of options, including rental income, borrowed capital and Scottish Government grant funding.

Cllr Day said he was *confident the works would help revitalise large areas of north Edinburgh, as well as districts across the Capital.

“There are a number of sites where we’re looking to expand 21st Century Homes – within the next year we will hopefully have Sighthill on site,” he 
said.

“This is to find room for *another 400 homes on brownfield sites – there is space in Craigmillar, land in the Waterfront area, and on old school sites.

“One of the main sites on the Waterfront was put up for sale and there were four bids, and we think we can *complement that.

“It will help regenerate the Waterfront.”

He added: “If there’s an opportunity for us to help regenerate the north then we will but that is just one part of the city.

“It’s brilliant to have another 400 homes added to address the housing shortage across the city.”

Housing campaigners have hailed the boost as an important step towards ensuring all the city’s residents have good access to affordable homes.

Betty Stevenson, convener of Edinburgh Tenants Federation, said: “It’s very welcome because of the severe shortage of housing throughout the city.”
 

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Don't get too excited by the following headline (as I did!). "Positive responses" from government is a long way from a City Deal being awarded, still, good to know it is being pursued. Interesting that aside from talk of "new transport infrastructure" for the Waterfront, there's no specific mention of the tram... Not sure what to make of that.

Leith Docks deal will mean £1bn boost

Edinburgh Evening News - 20th November, 2014

A major revamp of Leith Docks, new waterfront developments and upgrades to city’s cycle network are among the investments mooted if Edinburgh scoops a £1 billion funding jackpot.

Hopes of securing a “City Deal” to bankroll a range of major new projects across the Capital have received a boost after two MPs raised the prospect in the House of Commons.

It comes months after Glasgow formally signed an agreement UK and Scottish Governments to bring in £1.3bn of extra investment. The scheme will see Westminster and Holyrood give £500m each in additional grant funding to the city and its surrounding areas.

Now, two Edinburgh politicians – Labour’s Mark Lazarowicz and Liberal Democrat Mike Crockart – have asked Edinburgh might win extra finance on the same basis and “positive responses” are said to be coming from government.

Mr Lazarowicz said a City Deal for Edinburgh could be used for the redevelopment of Leith docks, completing the upgrading of the waterfront area, new transport infrastructure and training for the long-term unemployed.

He said: “We urgently need to invest in infrastructure to create the basis for sustainable economic growth and in skills training to make sure that people can take opportunities that investment presents. Leith Docks would be an ideal place to start here in Edinburgh – redevelopment proposals have been delayed, and there are unfinished environmental upgrades along many places in the waterfront.

“City deals elsewhere have also brought in new funding for transport infrastructure, and Edinburgh and the wider Lothians clearly need investment in that.

“A big boost in cycling facilities could be part of such a bid as well.”

Mike Crockart, MP for Edinburgh West, said a City Deal could include establishing an infrastructure fund to support improved transport access to Edinburgh Airport via rail and road; investment in the International Business Gateway development site; and supporting further growth in the thriving business start-up sector.

Edinburgh is discussing the terms of a City Deal proposal with other local authorities in East Lothian, Midlothian, West Lothian, Fife and the Borders, council leader Andrew Burns said.

He insisted it was too early to focus on what the cash might be used for but insisted Cabinet Office Minister Greg Clark’s comments in parliament had been “constructive”.

And he added: “We are getting very positive initial responses from government level.”
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Has the Edinburgh Waterfront development company changed it's name or something? Will anyone here be going to this as i'll be in Englandshire till late on Wednesday.
 

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Has the Edinburgh Waterfront development company changed it's name or something? Will anyone here be going to this as i'll be in Englandshire till late on Wednesday.
Here's some info from Wardie Bay on Facebook who attended the public exhibition. More supersized photos if you follow the link.

Tonight was the public display of the proposed masterplan for Granton Harbour, hosted at Granton Youth Centre - something which will have major implications for traffic on the surrounding streets and beyond. The last masterplan that was submitted to the council was withdrawn at the last minute when its rejection was recommended by council officials, and in the face of massive opposition.

There are no plans online, so attached are some photos of the proposals. Here is a summary of what is planned:

A "unique" coastal community
1,500 new homes (with at least one parking space for each one)
An international-standard five-star marina and Spa Hotel with 113 bedrooms and a restaurant/bar seating 125 plus a coffee shop
A health spa with indoor swimming pool, jacuzzi etc etc
Conference facilities
A marina and boatyard with 400 berths
30,000 sq metres of retail, leisure and business space
"Best of Scotland" indoor market
Fashion outlet mall
A food court and restaurants
Covered walkway to and from car parking
Masses of parking - at least one for every new home, plus ample more around the shops and restaurants
........ and a multi-storey car park for good measure

And a tram line and stop
 

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Shadow over Leith energy revival

Edinburgh Evening News - 12th December, 2014

John McLellan:

The collapse of the Pelamis wave energy company in Leith and the continuing slump in the price of oil is casting a shadow over the industrial revival of the port of Leith.

Although North Seas support will still be needed for years to come, pinning the port’s hopes on the energy sector, either renewable or fossil, would be risky.

So a new paper examining Leith’s economic future wisely concentrates instead on opportunities in administration, service industries, food, tourism, retail and the creative sector.

But guess what folks, unlocking the potential relies on better infrastructure which means more houses and better links… which means the extension of the transport system which dare not speak its name.

Given the furore over the plans to spend up to £400,000 on a new tram feasibility study, it will be a brave politician who attempts to drive this through but there is a growing sense of inevitability about it.

If Cambridge and Manchester are the benchmarks, one is now talking about a tram system and the other has had one for years and is adding to its network.

The one key sector absent from the Leith paper is higher education and with so much brownfield land available that seems strange. And with gown-and-town tension in places like the Southside, is there not at least the basis of a discussion about higher education opportunities on the Waterfront.

Heriot Watt University is starting to build a £17m centre for climate change research which will house marine scientists, geologists and fossil fuel experts, the kind of institution for which Granton would have been perfect.

Leith is crying out for a major anchor in which people will live as well as work and a higher education should be high on the priority list.
 

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Depressing analysis and critique of the recent council study, Leith Economic Framework.

Leith loses 3500 jobs in just five years

Greener Leith - 2nd January, 2014

A new economic assessment of Leith has revealed that 3500 jobs have been lost from the area in just five years, confirming the failure of masterplan after masterplan for the port area.

With unemployment higher than the city average, and the collapse of plans to bring an offshore wind-turbine manufacturer to the docks, a new draft economic strategy for the area pins future hopes for growth in Leith on trams, creatives and tourism – predicting that the docks will remain, “an under-used investment-starved asset right at the heart of Leith.”

The latest draft proposals are apparently a consequence of public sector exasperation over privately-owned Forth Ports’ approach to their extensive land holdings on the docks.

The port operator was purchased in 2011 by private-equity backed Arcus as public sector agencies worked to put together plans to bring Leith Docks up to “21st century” standards, altering development plans, providing tax breaks for development on the docks and investing more than £2.5m of tax payers cash in feasibility studies.

But despite Forth Ports’ claims that they are now focussing on developing the existing port business at Leith, the report baldly states: “There is no evidence at Leith of significant numbers of new port-related jobs created in the last 5 years or so, or of proposals or strategies from the current operators for further port-related investment and growth which could result in new jobs.

“An analysis of their financial structure shows that they [Arcus] achieved their acquisition by heavy borrowing, so have very high leverage gearing (ie debt-to-capital ratio).

“Operating surpluses are focused on meeting interest payments, with the remainder going principally to fund high rates of immediate return in the form of substantial directors’ and management remuneration, rather than towards any value-adding reinvestment in the property.

“To date, no significant investment has been made or announced for modernising the port, even if a business case could be made for it.”

The authors continue their bleak assessment of the dock’s future: “Taking this financial focus together with the changed nature of cargo handling, the low remaining traffic at Leith, and the availability of adequate superior facilities such as container and bulk liquid handling in other nearby ports, there is little scope for any large-scale expansion of existing traditional freight activity.

“In the present situation the docks are therefore likely to remain an under-used investment-starved asset right at the heart of Leith.”

You may be wondering whatever happened to the much vaunted plan to create hundreds of renewable energy jobs at Leith.

Although officials to do not blame Forth Ports entirely for the no-show from Spanish wind turbine firm Gamesa in Leith, it’s clear from the report that Arcus have been less than helpful.

The firm reportedly expected tax-payers to foot much of the multi-million pound bill for the infrastructure investment needed to modernise Leith docks, even whilst the private backers of Forth Ports would be in-line for a share of the profits.

The report contrasts Arcus with one of their competitors, Associated British Ports – pointing out that a similar development in Hull that will create hundreds of ‘green collar jobs’ through wind turbine manufacturer Seimens was funded entirely by the private sector.

The authors explain why there is little chance of major investment in the docks: “Sourcing funding for the infrastructure works has been a challenge.

“Forth Ports are quoted as expecting ‘a substantial part’ of the required modernisation to be funded from public sources. However, at Hull a £130m upgrade of the port, comparable to the works identified as necessary at Leith including construction of an outer berth, is being undertaken by Forth Ports’ main competitors, Associated British Ports. This will unlock an £80m investment from the German Siemens group to build a factory to assemble parts for offshore wind turbines, and is being met entirely from private funds with no financial input from the public sector. By implication, the upgrade of Leith Docks could, in principle, be funded in the same way.”

Forth Ports, was only privatised in 1992. Prior to this it was publicly owned.

This failure of Forth Ports new debt laden owners to invest in Leith, or come up with a clear plan for the area, has had wider implications for the land immediately adjacent to the docks. The dwindling ongoing operations in the dock, coupled with uncertainty over the future use of the site seems to have effectively sterilised many of the brown-field sites adjacent to the working port areas.

Afterall, few people would wish to purchase homes adjacent to 24 hour shipping activity, given the choice. And Greener Leith is aware of home owners who bought homes close to the docks, in the years when Forth Ports were proposing to cease industrial use of the site, who are now planning to sell up and leave at a substantial loss, after concluding the council can or will do little to enforce noise laws in the areas around the port.

And in any case, much of Western Harbour, which remains notionally zoned for housing is thought to have been ‘land banked’ by investors through a company based in the British Virgin Islands.

Thus, short of compulsory purchase of these under-invested in areas, perhaps the only option available to public agencies is to bring the tram to the Waterfront in a bid to get these shadowy non-investors to open their wallets.

NOT ALL GLOOM AND DOOM

Despite this gloomy report card from the waterfront there are some bright spots in the latest economic assessment of the area.

It turns out that Leith is a hotbed of entrepreneurial activity, with the neighbourhood claiming a place in the top three areas in Scotland for new business start-ups. This is supported by demographics – the area is younger, better educated and more cosmopolitan than many parts of Edinburgh and Scotland – with cheaper housing attracting immigrants from all over the world and cheaper property attractive to small businesses.

Other than supporting the extension of the tram to Leith, the latest proposals for supporting economic growth focus on this start-up success, instead of another ‘mega masterplan’ that relies on the grace and favour of Leith largest land owners. As part of this, the small business incubator, Creative Exchange, on Constitution Street looks set to expand as all the desks on offer there have been filled.

Many may also take heart from council economic development proposals that talk of focussing on assets such as Leith Theatre and Customs House, a recognition that good quality public realm is important, and that the success of initiatives such as Leith Late can push forwards the cultural regeneration of the area.

BUT WILL IT BE ENOUGH?

If Leith really is losing 700 jobs a year, will these proposals be enough to turn the tide as the wider economy grows?

If the waterfront regeneration is unlikely to materialise is Leith fated to become a dormitory settlement supplying cheap labour to fill the offices along the tram line further west?

The draft Leith Economic Framework is strangely blind to some community priorities that have been identified by local consultation work that might help to avert such a future.

The proposals make no mention of ideas that have won public support in the past such as free public space wifi, The Leith Bridge project, or of investment in Leith Links play facilities – even as the report wrestles with the strategies for encouraging tourists to visit – and families to stay – in Leith.

Recently it has turned out that there are still private firms who harbour designs on establishing a hovercraft link between Fife and Edinburgh. Surely, such a link would dovetail well with the tram line, and help to bring more people to Leith? But it is not mentioned in this report.

Indeed there is little acknowledgement that the council closure of visitor attractions such as Leith Waterworld, or underinvestment in community assets such as Duncan Place Resource Centre, may have played a role in pushing the unemployment rate up alongside anything that the private sector has done.

And as the property market recovers it seems that many of the old workshops and light-industrial business units are being bought up and converted into more small flats – a development trend that does little to support the economic diversity or resilience of the area – or encourage families to stay.

Lastly, there seems to be no evidence that the local neighbourhood management team are doing much to address the areas where they are failing in maintaining local public spaces as well they could be.

Without a commitment to ensuring that affordable, flexible business units will be protected in the neighbourhood, to spending more cash on public infrastructure other than the tram, and to improving the maintenance of what Leithers already have it’s thus to difficult to assess the purpose of the document as anything other than another slightly less aspirational master plan, compared with those that have gone before.

But then its fair to say Leithers may have had enough of big ideas.

What do you think the council can and should do to boost the economic fortunes of Leith? Let us know in the comments, or better still, you can respond to the council consultation online here.
 

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I'd love to see some movement on the leith docks regeneration. The place seems to have been abandoned. No leadership or vision at all. We should be looking at a major attraction - something akin to the spinnaker tower, or a super tall complex akin to the shard to get a buzz back about the place and stimulate development.
 

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I'd love to see some movement on the leith docks regeneration. The place seems to have been abandoned. No leadership or vision at all. We should be looking at a major attraction - something akin to the spinnaker tower, or a super tall complex akin to the shard to get a buzz back about the place and stimulate development.
There was this planned for Granton at one point but most of the grander plans for the Waterfront didn't survive the credit crunch.


http://www.edinphoto.org.uk/10/12_edinburgh_today_-_waterfront_visions.htm#2.
 

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Wow amazing! That's exactly the sort of key structure that needs to be build to kick start regeneration of the whole area. Edinburgh is a world class city based on its history. Today's leaders need to take equally brave steps!
I've been meaning to post some images of the 2008 Edinburgh Harbour masterplan for ages, so this is the perfect excuse!

This was the most recent proposal to develop the western docks at Leith, quickly abandoned after Forth Port's change of heart. Despite leaving the bulk of the docks still free for industrial/employment uses, it proposed a mixed use development with high-density housing, an office quarter, retail and leisure district centered on Ocean Terminal, hotels, a landmark cultural building, and a cruise liner terminal and marina.

While not as ambitious as some earlier Leith masterplans (which proposed towers of over 40 storeys), it still had a few higher buildings. To the north of Ocean Terminal would have been a 16 storey hotel, while on the other side of Western Harbour would have been another hotel of a similar height alongside a residential tower of 26 storeys.

I think something like this is still a possibility but it all depends on the tram line being extended to Newhaven. If it is, and once the current big city centre developments (Haymarket, St James, New Waverley, etc) are complete, the area could become attractive to developers again. Forth Ports recent decision to sell Granton Harbour to another developer (which is why things are moving there again) is maybe a positive sign for something similar in parts of Leith in the future.

Anyway, here are the pics.













 

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As much as master planning like this is interesting you have got to wonder what the point really is? Coming up with meaningless shapes for buildings you know are never going to built. Often shapes that would never be structurally sound. Saying you'd stick a Guggenheim museum in Leith without any kind of plan or understand. And no funding.

How many thousands of pounds of public money could be saved with simply allocating chunks of land on a map as office/hotel/residential etc and leaving the design detail to actual planning submissions for each site?

I can't help but feel it would lead to more realistic expectations and less disappointment in the end!
 

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Totally agree with the above comment. Edinburgh has to be one of the worst cities in the world for this. Endless plans and drawings that will never come to anything. IMHO Forth Ports should be hauled before a Parliamentary Committee. It's sitting on land like Tesco does. Look at the plan above. It includes a building behind the existing Holiday Inn and a number of buildings on the vacant plot of land directly across from Ocean Terminal. These plots could be developed on RIGHT NOW regardless of whether or not the wider area becomes more industrial or more residential. I just hope that Granton's redevelopment now finally happens and this spurs on Leith. Sadly, I'm not that hopeful.
 

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Flats proposed for Ocean Way from Port of Leith Housing Association.

PoLHA can do some great projects, like those on Magdalene Drive, Great Junction Street and the forthcoming Leith Fort by Malcolm Fraser. Unfortunately, this doesn't look like it will be one them.

14/05127/FUL | Residential development consisting of 57 flats providing a mixture of accommodation and tenure as well as associated infrastructure. | Land 96 Metres South Of 2 Ocean Drive Edinburgh



 
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