A derelict 19th century gunpowder store is to be brought back to life as part of a £500 million marina development in Edinburgh.
The 176-year-old warehouse at Granton Harbour has been on Scotland’s “buildings at risk” register for years.
But now it will be turned into a showroom and offices for the long-awaited development before being handed over for the local community once the project is complete.
It is hoped that the new development, which is expected to include berths for more than 300 vessels, will help Edinburgh boost Scotland’s lucrative marine tourism market, which is currently worth around £3.7 billion.
The new lease of life for the gunpowder store has been announced ahead of work beginning on the marina development, which will feature around 2,000 new homes, in the second half of this year.
Work is already underway to repair the roof of the B-listed building, which is the sole surviving historic structure on the middle pier at Granton Harbour.
Our ambition is for the building to be adopted for use by the local communityKEVIN FAWCETT
The two-storey building, which was built with extra-thick walls to ensure it was safe to store gunpowder there, had a cast-iron hoist to allow it to unload ships docked in the harbour. Inside the warehouse, which was one of four match buildings created for the opening of the pier in 1842, there are the remains of railway tracks used by goods wagons.
Developer Kevin Fawcett, who heads Edinburgh Marina Holdings, the firm behind the marina masterplan, said: “I’m delighted that we are able to play a role in saving this important historic building and to bring it back into productive use.
“The building is of significant historical importance to the local and wider community and has been allowed to deteriorate for decades. Its renovation is long overdue.
“Once the various Edinburgh Marina developments at Granton are complete our ambition is for the building to be adopted for use by the local community.”
The new marina facilities at Granton, which will offer “24/7 access to the seas,” will be designed to accommodate some of the world’s biggest “superyachts.”