Lar Housing Trust receives green light for flagship Port Edgar development

Lar Housing Trust receives green light for flagship Port Edgar development

Scottish charity Lar Housing Trust has been granted planning permission to develop a historic former naval barracks into new homes.

The 17-acre site at Port Edgar in South Queensferry will become the charity’s flagship development with plans to turn the derelict B-listed buildings into 49 high quality homes. Lar got the go-ahead for its plans at the City of Edinburgh Council planning committee on Wednesday.

Chief executive, Ann Leslie, said: “Today is a significant milestone for us. This is without doubt the most ambitious project we have undertaken and defines Lar as an innovative organisation, willing to accept risks and take on difficult projects that others simply would not touch. It encapsulates everything we’ve been trying to achieve since our launch in 2015 as our proposals will breathe new life into a site that has been lying empty for a number of years.

“Repurposing such buildings and reducing our carbon footprint are hugely important to us and Port Edgar is the perfect example of carbon capture - reusing and repurposing buildings to cut down on the emissions involved in demolition and new build. These buildings, once fully renovated, will be highly sought after and offer iconic views of all the Forth bridges.”

Built just after the First World War in 1919 the site, which sits directly beneath the Queensferry Crossing, has over the years been used for both military and civilian purposes. Its colourful past includes periods when it was used as a training centre for British and Allied servicemen as they prepared for the Normandy landings in 1944, a minesweeping training centre, a holiday camp for unemployed people from Glasgow and Edinburgh and as a storage facility for materials used in the construction of the Forth Road Bridge.

The buildings, which are B listed because of their historical significance, include a prison block, an old map room, a field hospital surgery, an officers’ ward, an air raid shelter and recreation rooms. Lar is planning to include a café and museum room as part of the development to retain a link to its past. The plans have been welcomed by the local community groups, who Lar is hoping to work with to ensure the development meets the needs of the local community.

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