Work starts on latest addition to Edinburgh’s Exchange financial district

Semple Street1Work has started on a £24 million development in Edinburgh’s vibrant Exchange district which will provide 35,000 sq ft of office space and 11,000 sq ft of ground floor retail units.

GSS Developments Ltd (GSS) believe 2 Semple Street, a speculative project which has strong financial backing from Bank of Scotland, will be in high demand from blue-chip companies when it is completed in January 2018.

The site was acquired last year from Aberdeen Asset Management and with demolition work of the existing building underway by Dalton Demolition, the main contractors will be appointed by the middle of April, with construction due to begin early June.

Designed by Michael Laird Architects, the office space over five floors is expected to accommodate up to 350 employees while the retail space is divided in to a 7,500 sq ft unit fronting Lothian Road and a dividable 3,000 sq ft unit on Fountainbridge.

GSS Developments director, Paul Stevenson, said: “Currently there are no available new build Grade A office developments coming out of the ground in central Edinburgh, therefore the strong appeal for potential tenants at 2 Semple Street is the absolute certainty on delivery and quality of product. With a number of well-known occupier lease expires in 2018, this delivery certainty allows us to discuss with confidence definite completion and move-in dates with occupiers.

“Our family have a relationship with Bank of Scotland going back nearly 50 years and this fully-funded development gives businesses, which are looking for first-class city centre space in Edinburgh’s financial district, the absolute confidence that they can start forward planning now.”

Joint agents for 2 Semple Street are Chris Cuthbert of CuthbertWhite and Angela Lowe of CBRE.

Chris Cuthbert added: “2 Semple Street is a strong address and will appeal to businesses keen to be located into The Exchange area at the heart of the city’s financial sector. This is the first speculative Grade A office development to be started in Edinburgh since 2014 and the confidence in deliverability from a long-established developer will be an important factor for businesses looking to relocate, expand or upgrade their current office provision.”

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