Comment: Development a vote of confidence in city

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The new blueprint for the massive gateway development next to the airport is sure to be the talk of the business community today.

The figures are eye-watering.

A £310 million new business district with the potential to pump £4.4 billion into the economy and create 3600 jobs.

Then there are the 2000 homes, not to mention plans for more retail.

It is all very exciting, although on that scale is also certain to be controversial, especially in an area which is already preparing for a tranche of new development.

The airport is key to the economic success of the city and building on its success in this way seems to make perfect sense.

As the Capital faces more competition than ever, we need some big thinking to stay ahead of the game and convince companies to set-up in and do business in the city.

Much is being made of the development of the tram in aiding this proposal, with a new stop planned as part of the development, and that is no doubt music to the ears of some in the City Chambers as they prepare for a public inquiry into the troubled project.

But the tram alone is not enough to service such a major development and, as the plans are developed, we will be expecting to see details on how the road infrastructure in the area is going to be upgraded to cope.

As any regular commuters know, there are big problems in west Edinburgh which must be tackled before something on this scale can be considered.

Consultation with key stakeholders and local communities is key as this plan could change the face of the area.

However, leaving aside the inevitable debate and controversies which will follow, the very fact
 that this is being talked about 
and appears to be moving forward is a vote of confidence in Edinburgh.