New Town Quarter

Published 25th August 2022

This major urban regeneration scheme will reimagine the former Royal Bank of Scotland’s (RBS) 5.9-acre plot of land adjacent to Edinburgh’s UNESCO World Heritage Site over the coming years.

Being delivered by Ediston and Orion Capital Managers, this high-quality mixed-use scheme within the city’s New Town Conservation Area will see the demolition of the existing RBS office and data centre buildings. This will accommodate the construction of around 100 new luxury apartments, 200 build-to-rent apartments, 100,000 sq ft of premium office amenities and a boutique hotel.

Working alongside 10 Design architects, RSP Consulting Engineers and project managers, Gardiner & Theobald, Waterman is providing structural and civil engineering input for the scheme, in addition to a variety of specialist services, including Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), acoustic and geotechnical design, flood risk and drainage. Having delivered the RIBA Stage 2 Concept Design, the team also provided targeted support for the main planning application in Spring 2020.

Surrounded by some of the highest value residential properties in the UK outside of London, our environmental team commissioned an initial socio-economics appraisal which predicted that this vibrant development had the potential to create a market-leading economy generating £34.4 million, including supporting over 700 jobs.

Alongside the redefinition of New Town, the site’s landscaping will be rejuvenated, retaining as many of the existing greenery and open spaces as possible. In a bid to maximise engagement with green spaces, plans are also in place for a pedestrian walkway to link the local park and neighbouring streets.

Sustainable drainage systems are a key component of the overall drainage strategy and our hydrology team are assisting the architects to develop a combined ‘blue and green roof system’ for attenuation and treatment of surface water run-off. A technical solution is also being developed to obtain approval for a ‘build over agreement’ with Scottish Waters, where the scheme sits over an existing sewer which runs from north to south throughout the site.

Elsewhere on the scheme, our structural engineers contributed to the outline design for the main buildings, including the reinforced concrete podium deck that will sit under the office, hotel and residential blocks. We also completed an assessment to determine the feasibility of re-using the existing piles to the RBS office and data centre buildings, which would deliver significant programme and cost savings.

Throughout the demolition and construction phases, we will undertake various transport and access responsibilities, including changes to the traffic flow on local roads and the accessibility of nearby public transport facilities and cycle routes. Our teams will also assess the impact on air quality, noise and vibrations, ensuring the works are carried out sustainably and with minimal effect to the surrounding businesses.

Client: Ediston and Orion Capital Managers
Architect: 10 Design