GRAHAM starts construction on Unite’s low-carbon Burnet Point

GRAHAM breaks ground at Burnet Point - Unite Students' first-ever mixed-use residential development in Edinburgh.

GRAHAM breaks ground at Unite Students' PBSA, Build to Rent and affordable housing development Burnet Point in Edinburgh | PBSA News
GRAHAM breaks ground at Unite Students' PBSA, Build to Rent and affordable housing development Burnet Point in Edinburgh.

Following Unite Students announcement in March that the company will deliver Burnet Point, contractor GRAHAM has begun construction on the new £59m low-carbon mixed-use development in Edinburgh, which combines purpose-built student accommodation (PBSA), Build to Rent and affordable homes. The development is the first of its kind in the company’s 70,000-bed portfolio.

Located on Abbey Lane, Burnet Point will deliver 298 student bedrooms in a mix of cluster and studio flats, with communal spaces and accessible landscaped roof areas. The scheme will also include Build to Rent apartments and affordable units managed by Hillcrest Homes. 

“Burnet Point is a unique project which prioritises sustainable construction. The demand for student accommodation continues to grow and the Build to Rent market remains buoyant, giving us a strong pipeline of projects in the coming years.” 

Gary Holmes, Regional Managing Director, GRAHAM Building North

The pioneering Burnet Point development will use low-carbon concrete and timber composite, an environmentally friendly alternative to natural wood. Carbon lifecycle assessments show Burnet Point will be Unite Students’ lowest-carbon new-build project. Its life cycle assessment is currently 702 kgCO2e/m2 (carbon emission equivalent per square metre).

“This is the company’s first combined development of purpose-built student accommodation, Build to Rent and affordable housing. We look forward to contributing positively to the student and private rental market in Edinburgh to help address the supply-demand imbalance in the city. This development reflects Unite Students’ ongoing commitment to provide high-standard, affordable student accommodation in locations where demand is greatest. We are excited to build our lowest carbon new-build property to date in our portfolio. The development will also contribute to the regeneration of the local area, which has seen significant investment in recent years. We are working closely with the community and later this year will offer a dedicated space for use by a local charity which is aligned with our purpose of creating a Home for Success.”

Tom Brewerton, Group Development Director, Unite Students

Burnet Point is scheduled to be completed in September next year, ready for the 2025/26 academic term for the student residents. As part of the development, Unite Students will also provide a dedicated community space. 

“This is an exciting project, and a fantastic example of true tenure blind community of a variety of housing and tenure types. These low-carbon homes will also contribute greatly towards achieving lower emissions and energy bills for tenants.”

David Milton, Head of Development, Hillcrest

GRAHAM has extensive experience of major PBSA and Build to Rent schemes, including Solasta Riverside in Glasgow and Bonnington Road in Edinburgh, which the contactor is currently on-site for.