Plans submitted for Jock’s Lodge PBSA in Edinburgh

Alumno Group submit planning for Jock’s Lodge, a purpose-built student accommodation scheme with ground floor commercial space in Edinburgh.

Willowbrae Road Lowres. Alumno Group have submitted plans for Jock’s Lodge PBSA in Edinburgh | PBSA News
Willowbrae Road Lowres.

Alumno Group have submitted a planning application to City of Edinburgh Council for Jock’s Lodge, a high-quality purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA) scheme with ground floor commercial space in Edinburgh.

Located on the corner of Restalrig Road South and London Road, the proposed development will include 191 student rooms – a mix of single bedrooms with shared kitchens and larger studio style bedrooms. Amenities at Jock’s Lodge include a ground floor lounge, study, gym and social spaces, with generous cycle storage provision, laundry and storage. External amenities include a rear landscaped courtyard and external terraces at roof level. Largely car-free, the development will have two parking spaces included, one of which will be an accessible/disabled parking space.

Alumno has a strong reputation for commissioning new artworks for its developments and is working with arts consultant, Matthew Jarratt, to deliver a series of sculpture and other artwork commissions which will be integrated into the new building and public realm by Edinburgh-based artist, Kenny Hunter. Local artists and students/recent graduates from Edinburgh College of Art will also be engaged in design projects and given the opportunity to showcase their works at the Jock’s Lodge site.

It is anticipated that spending in the local area by students living at the Jock’s Lodge development is estimated to be over £900,000 per year. In its peak during the construction phase, it is estimated that the site will employ up to 40 people.

Following an extensive pre-application and public engagement process for Jock’s Lodge, a series of design changes and developments have been realised:

  • The overall massing was reduced from eight to seven storeys, while revised floor-to-floor heights and a shortening of the parapet has significantly reduced the building height further. 
  • The commercial area offering has been increased, with additional provision for an outdoor terraced area. The proposed commercial space will include a new community local food and drink use, replacing the neighbouring Limelite pub, but under the same local ownership.
  • Let by Heineken UK, the Willow pub, which currently operates on the site, has been relocated to Musselburgh and is now trading as Willow on High Street following an agreement with Heineken. It will operate both at this new location and it is hoped at Jock’s Lodge until the latter is redeveloped. 

Alumno Group assessed the number of existing and proposed PBSA developments in the area, along with analysing the existing concentration of students. The company identified a shortage of accommodation in the area. Within a mile radius of the Jock’s Lodge site, there are eight PBSA developments (including this proposed scheme). If plans for the Jock’s Lodge development is approved, accommodation would still be significantly lower than the proportions of full-time students living in the Southside/Newington, City Centre, Meadows/Morningside and Fountainbridge/Craiglockhart wards. 

“This exciting mixed-use scheme will serve to ease the acute housing pressures, by providing greater options whilst addressing the increasing and well documented student housing demand by providing modern, high quality and well managed accommodation.

“We have listened to the responses of the local community through our thorough consultation process and have reduced the height of the building to accommodate this feedback.

“Employment and investment will be generated both during construction and once complete, increasing footfall to local shops and also serving to provide a new sustainable food/drink outlet for the community, including outdoor space. We are committed to being a good neighbour and believe our plans will make the best and most positive impact on what is a highly constrained and challenging urban site.”

David Campbell, Founder, Alumno