Council’s property firms to merge in cash-saving drive

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EDINBURGH’S three publicly owned property firms will be merged into two next year to save cash and simplify 

Either Waterfront Edinburgh Ltd, EDI, or the Craigmillar regeneration body PARC will cease to trade, with staff expected to be transferred.

The city council set up each of the firms to deliver development, but said it made sense to streamline its assets.

About a dozen arms-length companies were set up by city leaders before prudential borrowing was available to councils and there was an advantage to having external companies

But city leader Andrew Burns dismissed proposals from the Edinburgh Conservatives at the City Chambers last week to axe a number of cultural bodies, which run venues such as the Usher Hall, in favour of creating a single cultural body for the Capital.

This would have meant that the Festival City Theatres Trust, for example, would have been merged with other museum and culture venues.

Cllr Burns said giving the go-ahead to the plan would have led to a loss of expertise.