Plans for ‘digital quarter’ at Edinburgh Airport unveiled at MIPIM

Plans to create a dedicated ‘digital quarter’ next to Edinburgh Airport are set to progress after the proposals were unveiled at international property fair MIPIM.

The ‘Crosswind’ project could see the airport’s disused second runway transformed with offices and commercial buildings to attract major technology companies from around the world.

Plans for 'digital quarter' at Edinburgh Airport unveiled at MIPIM

Early indicative designs of the proposals

Crosswind Developments, which was set up by Edinburgh Airport owners Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) to undertake the project, will soon take ownership of the 150-acre site from GIP.

The firm claims the project, which also includes plans for housing and leisure facilities, could lead to up to 4,000 direct and indirect jobs being created.

Crosswind Developments is set to start a consultation phase with local stakeholders. It hopes to apply for outline planning permission either later this year or in early 2020.

Planning and development consultancy Lichfields was appointed to help deliver the masterplan and permissions for the project in April.

Plans for 'digital quarter' at Edinburgh Airport unveiled at MIPIM

Highlighting the opportunities of Crosswind at MIPIM, the world’s largest event for property developers and investors in Cannes, Crosswind Developments chief executive John Watson said the site offered “a unique opportunity”.

“Edinburgh and Scotland should be ideal locations for global technology jobs, but without a dedicated approach to creating the kind of environment technology companies are looking for, it’s much harder to bring that investment here,” he said.

“These companies want modern, state-of-the-art offices, world-class connectivity, an environment that is attractive to its workforce with easy access to global connections. A pool of high-quality graduates is another important factor.

“Crosswind is, perhaps, one of the best connected, undeveloped sites in Scotland with immediate access to air, rail and road transport. It will have a focus on the kind of housing, working space and leisure facilities that people demand.

“Working with others, we believe we can make this one of the most attractive locations in the world for these companies, while also nurturing home grown start-ups.”

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