We walk past them every day, but do we know what’s taking shape on the building sites we're so familiar with?
Edinburgh always has plenty of construction projects going on.
Whether it’s essential repairs to North Bridge, the building of the city’s first purpose-built concert hall for 100 years or a huge housing and office development in the New Town, there’s a lot of work under way, helping to shape the Capital’s future.
But many have been delayed because of Covid, the impact of inflation on the construction industry or other factors. It’s difficult to keep up to date with everything that’s happening. So here’s a quick summary of what’s going on with some of the prominent projects currently under way in the city.
1. St Andrew's House
St Andrew's House, the Scottish Government headquarters in Regent Road - where ministers have their offices - currently has a large expanse of scaffolding covering much of its frontage. The work is to tackle water ingress to the structure of the building. Investigations started in December 2022, with the remedial works starting in March 2023. These are due for completion by the end of August 2023 at a cost of £447,000. The government says it is a complex project due to the specialist techniques required when working on a Category A listed building. Photo: Ian Swanson
2. Playhouse theatre
The Playhouse - currently covered by scaffolding - is closed for a 12-week maintenance project, which includes updating the ventilation system, installing a new control system for the orchestra pit and cleaning the building's façade, It closed on May 15 and is due to reopen on August 4 in time for the Edinburgh Festival. Photo: Ian Swanson
3. 12-14 Picardy Place
The townhouses at 12-14 Picardy Place, at the top of Leith Walk, are being remodelled to form a new 67-bedroom hotel with bar and restaurant. The Outhouse Bar mews building in Broughton Street Lane, at the rear of the premises, is being retained, but an extension at the rear of No 14 is being replaced by a new five-storey modern extension to link the townhouse with the mews buidling. Photo: Ian Swanson
4. Old Royal High School
The old Royal High School - once earmarked to house the Scottish Parliament and more recently proposed for a luxury hotel - is now set to become a national centre for music and new home to St Mary's Music School. Work is under way, but it was announced in April that the cost - previously around £45 million - had increased "significantly" and the project would take four years to complete, finishing in 2027. The plans include a 300-capacity main auditorium created in the former school hall, which would host concerts at least once a week, as well as a new foyer and staircases under existing spaces in the building. Photo: Ian Swanson