Hundreds of jobs created at Edinburgh Marina's new waterfront tech hub

The creator of a landmark waterfront development near Edinburgh has announced plans for a technology hub which could create up to 450 jobs.

By Hannah Burley
Tuesday, 29th October 2019, 5:58 pm
Plans for 500m development now include a gamechanging office for tech businesses. Image: Contributed
Plans for 500m development now include a gamechanging office for tech businesses. Image: Contributed

Edinburgh Marina Holdings, the group behind the Edinburgh Marina Development, is to create a purpose-built tech facility as part of the £500 million regeneration project at Granton Harbour.

The hub will comprise multiple private offices and co-working spaces, break-out areas for networking and events, a coffee bar, shops and restaurants.

Developers said the tech site could create as many as 450 direct jobs and will contribute towards an “active and vibrant” high street as part of the 50-acre site just north of Edinburgh.

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The ambitious waterside development covers a 50-acre site. Image: Contributed

In response to demand for office space and increasing numbers of tech firms in the Scottish capital, the hub will aim to attract businesses in the data science and technology fields, including artificial intelligence, blockchain, fintech, quantum computing and data analytics.

Scottish Enterprise reported a 77 per cent rise in the number of tech start-ups established in Scotland last year, significantly more than the overall UK average of 59 per cent and marginally ahead of the London score of 76 per cent.

'Economic regeneration'

The ambitious waterside development will also include more than 1,850 new homes for sale or rent, a luxury retirement village, a Hyatt Regency Spa and Conference hotel with serviced apartments, a medical hub and neighbourhood shopping.

Plans submitted for the marina feature a purpose-built clubhouse and 427 fully-serviced boat accommodation berths with 24 hours access at all states of tides.

The development in its entirety is expected to create a total of around 1,300 permanent jobs and deliver a high percentage of affordable homes.

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Charles Price, a spokesman for Edinburgh Marina Holdings, said: “This exciting development will help us deliver on our objective for the economic regeneration of Granton.

“It will provide much needed office space and substantial employment opportunities with the provision of flexible low-cost space for start-ups in a growing digital economy.”

Steve McGavin, planning and development director at property consultancy GL Hearn, called the tech hub a “gamechanger for the north of the city”.

He added: "The creation of an additional 450 direct jobs will bring the total number of employment opportunities to 1,300; it will also be the catalyst for kickstarting the City of Edinburgh Council’s plans to create a new high street along West Harbour Road.

“There is a strong and emerging market from tech and digital start-ups in Edinburgh. We believe the presence of such a facility will provide a further boost to the ongoing regeneration of Edinburgh’s waterfront.

“The area has already undergone a significant transformation in recent years… and is set to become one of the most exciting and sought-after parts of the city.”