500 rental homes could be built on Fountainbridge wasteland

The Springfield project will feature a mix of 221 apartments, ranging from studios to three-bedroom duplexes
The Springfield project will feature a mix of 221 apartments, ranging from studios to three-bedroom duplexes
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HUNDREDS of “Friends-style” city centre flats moved a step closer today as plans were submitted to the city council.

More than 500 build-to-rent homes are to be built on wasteland at Fountainbridge as part of the £125m Springside project.

The Evening News revealed last year how US-style apartments will be managed by a superintendent, echoing the hit 90s sitcom starring Jennifer Aniston and Matt LeBlanc.

“Springside represents a significant investment into the Scottish housing market and underlines our confidence in not just Edinburgh but the country as a whole,” said Tony Brooks, managing director of developers Moda.

“There is huge demand for quality rental housing in Edinburgh, driven by the city’s status as a major commercial centre and university town, and we aim to capitalise on that by delivering next generation urban living.

“By being both the developer and the landlord, we can ensure that our future customers have the best possible experience, designing a scheme from the ground up for rent and utilizing the best of modern technology and providing generous amenity space.”

The initial six-storey block features a mix of 221 apartment sizes, ranging from studios to three-bedroom duplexes.

Designed by CDA Architects, facilities will include gyms, roof terraces, communal courtyards and lounges, virtual sports simulators and dining spaces are also outlined.

Moda and partners Apache Capital bought the Springfield site from Grosvenor Great Britain and Ireland in May last year, which included 46 existing units.

The deal was hailed as one of Scotland’s biggest property transactions post-Brexit, helping kick-start the country’s build-to-rent sector.

Once finished, Springside will provide 500 homes for rent alongside offices and a park – creating a “build-to-rent village” of 1,000 residents.

A 24-hour concierge service will be provided, while a MyModa app will allow Moda customers to report faults, organise events and buzz in friends.

Tenancies dubbed “family-friendly” for more than three years will also be offered, as developers strive to transform renting from “a stopgap to home ownership into an aspirational lifestyle choice.”

The plans are part of a £1.5bn partnership between Moda and Apache Capital Partners to deliver 6,000 rent-only flats in UK city centres. Other schemes are currently underway in Birmingham, Liverpool, Manchester and a 433-home site in Holland Park, 
Glasgow.

Speaking at the announcement last year, Councillor Gavin Barrie, former leader of the city’s economy committee, welcomed the investment.

“This is a sizeable investment demonstrating international confidence in Edinburgh,” he said.

“It confirms what the council has long believed – that this is a highly desirable area prime for further regeneration.

“The site is attractively positioned right on the edge of Edinburgh’s financial district and I look forward to seeing new residents living there, bringing the area to life in future years.”

andy.shipley@edinburghnews.com