Edinburgh BioQuarter reveals vision for expansion

The existing development at Edinburgh BioQuarter

EDINBURGH BioQuarter has released the first images of a £750m planned transformation which will create a new vibrant mixed-use neighbourhood, supporting a community of more than 20,000 people.

With ambitions to accelerate the development of BioQuarter and create Edinburgh’s Health Innovation District, the long-term vision for the site now includes plans for residential housing. There will be more space for research and healthcare innovation, commercial use, hotel, gym, retail and leisure. The expansion will support an estimated 9,000 new jobs, plus additional construction jobs and to grow the pipeline of successful companies.

Over the last two decades, BioQuarter has played a pivotal role in cultivating world-leading medical research and life sciences innovation that is improving people’s lives around the world.

The 160-acre site, which lies three miles South of Edinburgh City Centre, is currently home to 8,000 people who work and study within its boundary and includes 13 award winning life sciences businesses based at BioQuarter’s Innovation Centre, the globally renowned Edinburgh Medical School, 900-bed Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh and one of Europe’s largest clusters of stem cell research at the Scottish Centre for Regenerative Medicine.

BioQuarter’s partners – City of Edinburgh Council, NHS Lothian, Scottish Enterprise and the University of Edinburgh – have already invested over £500m in the existing site, with a further £300m investment planned in the next five years through pipeline projects, including the new £68m University of Edinburgh Usher Institute.

BioQuarter is developing a masterplan and place-making strategy and intends to seek a joint venture partner through a formal OJEU process to accelerate developments.

Commenting on the vision for the new BioQuarter, Hugh Edmiston, Chair of Edinburgh BioQuarter Strategy Board, said: “This is the start of an exciting journey in the next chapter of Edinburgh BioQuarter’s development. As we move ahead, we want to ensure that we involve our staff, students and the local communities in this long-term vision.

“The opportunities here are vast and, once realised, can deliver significant and long lasting economic and social benefits for Edinburgh, Scotland and beyond.”

Once completed the new vision could deliver one of the largest single developments in the UK focussed on life sciences innovation, health care delivery, medical research and teaching.

Interim Programme Director Anna Stamp said: “We want to build on the success to date of the BioQuarter. Our plans are to create a vibrant new neighbourhood of Edinburgh centred around a world-leading community of healthcare innovators. By developing at scale and at pace together with a private sector partner we will accelerate solutions to global health challenges.

“It is vital that BioQuarter develops as a welcome and accessible place for those who live around it, as well as those who work or study here. We can do this by fostering a inclusive environment which promotes wellbeing to create a welcoming place where people live, learn, work, play, relax and discover as part of Edinburgh’s Health Innovation District.”

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