Cala Homes seek green light for scaled back Ocean Drive scheme

Cala homes cgi

Cala Homes, working with architect firm, EMA Architecture and Design, have submitted a revised planning application for their site at Ocean Drive, just west of the Casino.

Although there is already an existing consent for three high blocks on this site incorporating 128 flats and a 135 bed hotel, this new application is for far fewer homes – at a much lower density.

The new plans are for just 32 “mews style” townhouses – plus 9 flats which will provide affordable homes.

Public access to the dockside is retained in this design – which is a good thing – as if these homes are ever built we’re pretty sure that a lot of people will want to go and have a gander at that aspirational white yacht thing that’s also been inserted into the docks using the magic of CGI by the architects (see photo above).

Cala Homes Plan

The homes will be built in two fairly straight forwards blocks as the plan shows. In between, the two blocks is a lane, which provides access for residents to park their cars – and it will also provide a bit of semi-private space and shelter from that – sometimes – biting North Sea wind.

Height wise – the blocks are no taller than three storeys. This means that if you live in a top floor flat over the road in the Tradewinds development your view of the proposed wind turbine factory may remain unbroken for many years to come.

Cala homes west elevation

Whilst it’s not the most exciting development ever to be built in Leith, it has the potential to be better than a great deal of the private sector led building we’ve seen in Leith before the crunch.

And compared to the previous proposals which already have consent, this new, more modest affair, with arguably more appeal as family accomodation, is unlikely to be contentious.

For many months there have been very few planning applications of this scale from the private sector in Leith – and this is the first one we’ve seen that has apparently sought to rethink a way forwards for a brown field site in the area.

If the trams are ever extended to Ocean Terminal, this development could end up being right next to a tram stop. Perhaps Cala know something we don’t about the tram project? Or perhaps this is just a very early green shoot of confidence in the neighourhood after the long recession.

You can find out more about the proposals and comment on the application on the City of Edinburgh Council planning portal.

Written by Ally Tibbitt

Ally Tibbitt is a member of Greener Leith. He looks after this website.