Edinburgh's St James Quarter evacuated again due to false fire alarm

Edinburgh’s £1 billion retail and leisure development St James Quarter has again been temporarily evacuated, with the fire service attending the scene.

Saturday, 31st July 2021, 6:04 pm

Visitors to the recently opened centre were spotted standing outside this morning, with the Scottish Fire & Rescue Service confirming that one fire engine was sent to the scene after a fire alarm had gone off, but it turned out to be a false alarm.

A spokesperson for St James Quarter said: "The safety of our visitors and staff is our number one priority. Following a fire alarm in one of our retailers, St James Quarter was temporarily evacuated. We are now open as normal."

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The centre was evacuated after a fire alarm went off in one of its shops (file image). Picture: John Devlin.

Shoppers also had to evacuate the new build on July 7, just days after it opened to the public, with scores of people seen waiting outside the building.

That came just days after the city-centre development, which took five years to build, flooded after storms and extreme rainfall. Staff at the centre could be seen mopping up pools of water inside several stores as shoppers were spotted gathering in the building’s more sheltered areas.

There have also been more recent reports of the building being evacuated twice in the space of just a few hours.

The development has been attracting crowds of shoppers to its growing list of outlets, and has now opened the doors to its Bonnie & Wild high-end food court. However, its design continues to divide opinion, with architect and design critic Oliver Wainwright recently saying he believes it has “defaced” the city’s historic skyline.

The latest incident comes after the centre only opened on June 24 (file image). Picture: John Devlin.

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