Major Planning Application Submitted for New £2 Billion Edinburgh Neighbourhood

Homes-led ‘20 Minute’ Neighbourhood Proposed for 205-acre West Edinburgh Site

Plans Includes Space for 7,000 New Homes – Plus Commercial and Community Facilities

One the most significant and sustainable urban expansions of Edinburgh in a generation is a step closer to reality following the submission of a major planning application to the City of Edinburgh Council (CEC).

West Town Edinburgh Limited, the development consortium headed by Drum Property Group which owns more than 200-acres of prime development land to the west of Edinburgh, has unveiled ambitious proposals for West Town, a new homes-led ‘twenty-minute’ neighbourhood set to transform Scotland’s capital.

The 205-acre West Town site – located between Ingliston Park and Ride and the Gogar Roundabout at the western gateway of Edinburgh – is regarded as one of the most strategically important large development areas in the UK. The £2-billion project is set to become the biggest, single homes-led development in Edinburgh in modern times, significantly addressing the city’s well publicised ‘housing emergency’ whilst providing an outstanding quality of life in a brand-new, sustainable mixed-use community.

Development proposals follow guidelines set out by CEC’s City Plan 2030 which identifies the area as having the potential to become a vibrant, high-density city extension with a capacity for 7,000 homes – along with the necessary employment, commercial, leisure and community facilities required for a 20-minute neighbourhood.

Proposed facilities include schools, medical provision, civic and community space as well as bars, restaurants, cafes, retail and other commercial spaces. There are plans for 27 acres of accessible green space – including a large 5.5-acre central park, several ‘pocket’ parks and a ‘wildlife’ corridor, criss-crossed by a network of cycle, running and walking tracks. The Edinburgh Tram route runs directly through the site and a new tram stop will be created to ensure the whole development has access to quick and efficient public transport.

The proposals for West Town are consistent with the West Edinburgh Placemaking Framework, approved by CEC in December 2023 and align with the ambitions of the Scottish Government’s National Planning Framework 4, which was approved in February 2023.

West Town Edinburgh was formed in April 2021 by Drum Property Group to progress development of the site. Drum is currently delivering a variety of transformative mixed-use projects across Scotland, including the award-winning Buchanan Wharf and Candleriggs Square developments in Glasgow.

Welcoming the planning application submission, Graeme Bone, Drum’s Group Managing Director said: “We now have the opportunity to make West Town an exemplar, sustainable 20-minute neighbourhood on a par with the best new developments taking place across the UK and Europe.

“This planning application is a significant milestone in realising the ambition we share with the council both for the local area and for the city, further strengthening the long-term collaborative process that is set to deliver a major transformation of the west of Edinburgh.

“The amount of space on the site combined with its superb location allows for a natural extension for the city providing 7000 mixed-tenure homes and new jobs in a new 20-minute neighbourhood. West Town has direct access to some of the best public transport in Scotland – the tram line travels through the site and there are integrated rail, cycle and road connections, creating a strategic gateway to Edinburgh.

He added: “Drum has a proven track record of delivering high quality large-scale communities across Scotland and our ambition for the area matches that of the proposed Edinburgh City Plan 2030. We look forward to continuing to work with the Council to advance our shared vision to create a new, sustainable urban quarter for the city.”

Subject to the ongoing development of the delivery strategy – as set out by the joint Memorandum of Understanding between West Town Edinburgh Ltd and CEC, the approval of City Plan 2030, and in accordance with all relevant council policies and appropriate planning consents – it is hoped that work will start on site before the end of 2024, with the first phase of homes and community amenity being ready for occupation from early 2026.

The West Town planning application has been submitted following a successful 12-month local consultation programme which included two online and one public consultation events, resulting in more than 2000 visits to the West Town website.