Developer Glencairn Properties has submitted a planning application for a new residential development on the site of a former Art Deco cinema building on Great Junction Street in Edinburgh’s Leith area.
The proposal sets out plans to create a total of 36 residential properties comprising a mix of three-bedroom family apartments, one and two bedroom apartments with a further nine allocated for affordable housing. The existing commercial units to Great Junction Street will be retained under the existing ownership.
Glencairn Properties said it has prioritised retaining and refurbishing the existing derelict Grade B-listed former State Cinema building to the front of Great Junction Street. An “unsightly” warehouse building to the rear will be demolished to pave way for a new contemporary extension with the resultant development providing a quality five-storey residential building grouped around a south-facing courtyard, it added.
Boasting a dual aspect with views to the south and north-east, the proposed development will also benefit from long ribbon horizontal balconies, which will cantilever out and gently follow the curve of the water of Leith. This will provide excellent views across the water of Leith, Coalie Park and towards to the Shore.
The designs are sympathetic with the existing architectural style of the surrounding buildings and reflect Leith’s industrial heritage through its use of materials such as brick and profiled metal cladding. Some of original aspects of the cinema building have been retained including the spacious foyer, which will serve as an impressive entrance to the accommodation.
The top floor has been set back to provide a deck with extensive views back towards the city and Arthur’s Seat with the entire build scaled to the height of the existing auditorium.
Secure underground parking has been factored into the plans as well as internal bicycle stores with direct access from Great Junction Street.
The shared courtyard will create a focal point and community feel with additional extensive landscaping and a mix of open and intimate spaces further benefiting the residents.
Daryl Teague, director of Glencairn Properties, said: “This hasn’t been a straightforward project, there were several complex issues we had to address to get to this stage but we are confident that our plans will create a unique development that will greatly improve and enhance the area.
“We have tried to breathe life into the original building and respected many of the original art deco features with our design. The planning application has been submitted now and if successful we would estimate the development to commence late 2018. In the meantime, we have partnered with the Hidden Doors team and provided the building as a new arts venue for the Festival next year.”
The State Cinema in Leith closed in 1972 and has since been used as a bingo hall, a nightclub and church. Glencairn Properties, based in Stanhope Street, Edinburgh, is confident that this scheme is will provide a premier residential solution to help reinvigorate this derelict site, which is currently an eyesore, on Great Junction Street.
Consultants on the application are ISA Architects and Scott Hobbs Planning.