New student accommodation development planned for Edinburgh

Development company S Harrison has submitted a planning application to build a new student accommodation scheme on a vacant site to the West of Edinburgh city centre.

The ICA-designed development on Gorgie Road will have 269 bedrooms in two buildings with a wide range of amenities and facilities. The site is next to the Water of Leith and the scheme would incorporate high quality soft landscaping, connecting to the river bank.

New student accommodation development planned for Edinburgh

York-based S Harrison acquired the site last year. It previously housed several industrial units that were recently demolished.

Chris Hale from S Harrison said: “This site is centrally located between several Edinburgh Napier University buildings, as well as having good access to The University of Edinburgh and Heriot-Watt University. It also benefits from excellent sustainable public transport links and has plenty of local facilities on the doorstep, so it’s the ideal location for a high-quality student accommodation scheme.

“There’s also strong demand in the city for this type of development. Edinburgh is one of the UK’s top locations to study and students expect high quality, well-furnished rooms with exceptional communal facilities in well-located developments. As a result, the market is extremely active with limited supply compared to other cities, which makes this development a particularly exciting opportunity.”

S Harrison has made a significant investment in Edinburgh in recent years. In 2016 it completed work on a £23 million, 240-bedroom student accommodation scheme, with retail units on the ground floor, on Leith Walk, known as Haddington Place. The company is currently transforming Buchan House on St Andrew Square in Edinburgh’s New Town into a 72-bedroom Malmaison hotel with bar and brasserie.

S Harrison also recently acquired a former retail and office unit, with adjoining land, on Westfield Road and is exploring opportunities for a 0.6 hectare site on Ocean Drive in Leith, as well as pursuing planning approval to transform a 1970s office building in the West Coates area, into a new hotel development.

The gross development value of the five current schemes will be approximately £150m and the company is now exploring further opportunities across Scotland’s central belt.

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