Edinburgh St James – Guide to Forthcoming Essential Planned Works

In various discussions with TH Real Estate (THRE) – the developers for the new St James development – New Town & Broughton Community Council has been encouraging THRE to provide information on their plans for the major work expected in the next few months. Whilst NTBCC has been generally supportive of the overall development, we have voiced concerns over the inevitable disruption to the surrounding area during the demolition and redevelopment works.

THRE have issued their first communication covering the planned work over the next 4 – 6 months in a ‘quick reference guide’: click the thumbnail to download the full PDF.


The existing centre, including the St James car-park, is expected to close around March. We understand that the CPO Inquiry is now complete. The majority of the planned works outlined are termed ‘enabling works’ or pre-construction. This includes more utility work – a new gas main and water supply will be installed on Leith Street and a further gas main and sewer/drainage work on Elder Street. We understand that the new electricity supply work has already been completed but the new substation off St James Place will continue until April 2016.

In parallel with access improvements to John Lewis (which is planned to continue trading throughout), the central barrier on Leith Street will be removed progressively from January 2016 necessitating a single lane contraflow on Leith Street. Once removed, new pedestrian crossings will be constructed to enable access to the new John Lewis entrance. The overhead link bridge from the Greenside carpark will also be removed but we are unsure of the exact timing for this.

Pedestrian access on Leith Street will be maintained as will access to bus stops (being relocated as necessary). THRE also state that it is also their intention to maintain access to all adjacent properties throughout the demolition and construction works.

The demolition of the existing St James Centre will be phased, with New St Andrews House being first, and the total demolition taking 12–18 months. We have yet to ascertain the exact routes expected to be used to remove the demolition material from the site to Leith docks.

If you have further questions, please contact us (via this website’s contact form) or the developers directly (contact details in the ‘quick reference guide’).