Start to Finish: City of Edinburgh


Start to Finish

City of Edinburgh

22 Sept 2022
This paper looks at how long it took recent housing site completions in Edinburgh to develop out based on when they first received planning permission.
It is often not well recognised that there can be a significant time lag between the allocation of a housing site or its inclusion in a Housing Land Audit (HLA) and the delivery of homes from that site. There are many factors that play a role in this.
Start to Finish is award winning research undertaken by Lichfields in England and Wales. This Insight looks at housing development sites in the City of Edinburgh to ascertain what Edinburgh’s Start to Finish profile looks like.
For the purpose of this research we have looked at development sites that were completed between April 2016 and March 2021 – ie over a 5 year period. In so doing we will draw conclusions about how long it takes for smaller sites to deliver ie less than 500 units. We have also looked a 2 much larger sites (one Brownfield and one Greenfield) and tracked their journey from first consent to delivery by 2021 and will similarly draw conclusions on those sites in terms of expectations for their Start to Finish.
We have examined the sites that were reported as complete in the 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021 Housing Land Audits prepared by the City of Edinburgh Council.
In so doing we were able to assess the Start to Finish profile of those sites grouped by site capacity. 159 sites were considered, see Figure 1 for the proportion of new homes delivered by different sizes of sites. In terms of absolute site numbers 681 new homes were built on sites that had a capacity of less than 20; 2,148 new homes were built on sites that had a capacity of 20-99; and, 6,524 new homes were built on sites that had a capacity of 100-399.
It should be noted that a number of these sites are parts of larger overall sites but that they each have individual entries in the HLA. Two such larger overall sites that have a number of phases are considered separately overleaf. This paper concludes by setting out Start to Finish expectations for the sites being brought forward by Edinburgh City Council for delivery of new homes over the coming years.