The Future


Shrubhill Transport Workshop

Shrubhill Repair Shop  -  Single Deck Trams

For many decades until the 1990s, Edinburgh Corporation Transport Department, latterly Lothian Region Transport had a depot and workshop at Shrubhill, on the western side of Leith Walk, mid-way between Edinburgh and Leith.

The building at the rear of this depot once housed the engine that drove the cables for part of Edinburgh's cable tramways. 

Engine House for driving cables for Edinburgh's Cable Car system

In later years it became a repair shop for Edinburgh's trams and buses.

Now some of the repair work has been outsourced and some is carried out at the depot in Annandale Street, about half a mile to the north-east of the old Shrubhill depot.

Shrubhill Proposals  -  2003

The developer, George Wimpey, hopes to construct 281 flats up to seven storeys high on the site of the old bus depot, together with a further 77 flats in the vicinity. 

Two proposals by George Wimpey for development of this site have already been turned down by the Council.  Their latest proposal for this site will be considered by the Council on 28 May. 

Evening News  23 May 2003, p.23

Edinburgh's Councillors, on 28 May 03, rejected George Wimpey's proposal for their  30m development of the Shrubhill site on the grounds that it was "simply not good enough". 

Some local residents had expressed concern over the height of the buildings and the mix of materials.

Evening News  ? May 2003,

Shrubhill Proposals  -  2004

Permission has still not yet been granted for a proposed housing development on the site of the old tram depot at Shrubhill.  George Wimpey, developers,  have already submitted plans three times and all have been rejected.  They have now submitted a fourth set of proposals, seeking permission to build up to 355 houses on the site.

These proposals have met with further objections from neighbours and heritage bodies, and are to be the subject of a public enquiry to begin on 9 March 04 in McDonald Road Library.  The development has been criticised as being "too dense", "too high", and "bland and boring".

Evening News  20 February 2004, p.23

The Wimpey proposals have failed to gain approval. After having been turned down by Edinburgh Councillors, they were then rejected in July 2004 following a public inquiry.

Wimpey have now withdrawn and ten other developers have submitted bids to develop the site, mainly as housing.  Some of their proposals include development of the adjacent social work headquarters at a later date.  A decision on who is to develop the site may be made around March 2005.

Evening News  6 December 2004, p.10

Shrubhill Proposals  -  2005

New owners of the site, Edinburgh-based BL Developments have announced that they plan to seek permission in late-summer or early-autumn to proceed with a 35m development for 300 homes, shops, small offices, a possible hotel, two public squares and a tree-lined pedestrian link through the site.

The proposed height of the buildings is lower than under the earlier proposals from Wimpey.  The latest plans have received some favourable comments from the Edinburgh heritage body, the Cockburn Association.

Evening News  29 April 2005  p.29

Four years later, and still nothing built!

Shrubhill Proposals  -  2009

The Evening News reported that a new hotel was to be created on the site of the former bus depot, and that a planning application would be submitted next week.  It will be the fifth attempt to redevelop the site.

The paper reported that a four-star hotel, containing about 120 rooms was expected.  These plans replace earlier plans by BL Development, approved in 2006.

Evening News  2 April 2005  p.21



Edinburgh Today