Ratho country park development ‘ready by 2015’

Ricky Henderson, Labour MSP, has backed the development. Picture: Jane Barlow
Ricky Henderson, Labour MSP, has backed the development. Picture: Jane Barlow
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WORK on a major new country park being developed on the site of a derelict quarry near Ratho is expected to be completed within two years.

More than 100 homes are also to be built as part of the development which will see the entire 26-hectare site reshaped to create a lakeside setting with woodland walks.

It is understood a selection of townhouses, apartments and detached homes will be built on the site and accessed from Wilkieston Road.

Developer Cala Homes and architects Yeoman McAllister have lodged a planning application notice for the residential development with city planners ahead of a round of public consultations in April.

Final plans for the site are expected to be submitted by early summer.

Original consent was given for the site back in 2005 and the entire project is expected to be completed by late 2015.

The plans feature a small loch as the centrepiece of the park. A second, smaller body of water is also to be formed, connected to the Union Canal, to create a 75-berth marina.

Murray Yeoman, of Yeoman McAllister, said: “This is a very exciting project to be involved with, one which could benefit the community of Ratho greatly. It’s a fantastic site which could become a fantastic asset for the surrounding area.

“Community consultations are due to begin within the coming weeks and, following this, we expect to submit final plans by around mid-June.”

Once completed, the park will be linked to both the Edinburgh International Climbing Arena and the Union Canal to create a major leisure area.

A walkway across the canal will provide a direct route to Ratho village and bus services.

The quarry is one of the largest vacant brownfield sites in the Edinburgh area.

Pentland Hills ward councillor Ricky Henderson said: “I look forward to viewing these plans in more detail and am glad that the community will have their chance to get involved. A walkway linking it with the climbing centre would be a good development, too.”

The former hard rock quarry has been derelict since it closed in 1990 and is considered dangerous because of its 30-metre high cliff walls and an 18-metre water-filled sump.

A community consultation on the housing plans is set to take place in Ratho Community Centre on April 12 at 2pm. It is intended that Ratho will be branded a “canal village”.

City leaders have been working with British Waterways Scotland in recent years to transform Edinburgh’s 16km of canal.