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Cowgate blaze site overhaul gets go-ahead

posted 22 Jan 2009, 06:20 by David Rintoul   [ updated 1 Nov 2009, 21:50 ]

The massive £40 million redevelopment of the Cowgate fire site has finally been given the go-ahead, six years after the blaze ripped through the area.

Councillors have unanimously approved the controversial plan – which includes a 200-bedroom hotel, shops and glass walkways – and work is expected to get under way in the autumn.

The project, dubbed SoCo by the developers, would also include a business centre and a new breakthrough on to Chambers Street.

But developer Whiteburn Projects, which released new images of the project today, will need to return to the planners to address concerns about the height of a "tower" rising up from the Cowgate, which will house hotel bedrooms, and the materials used on the South Bridge facade – described as "boxish and angular" by Tory councillor Cameron Rose.

However, these are not considered to be major barriers for the scheme.