Edinburgh city council has earmarked £2.5bn for housing and plans to build 20,000 new homes by 2028.

The money will go towards modernising existing homes with 10,000 of the new properties to be affordable.

Housing, homelessness and fair work convener, Cllr Kate Campbell, described the investment as one of the ‘most ambitious’ for any local authority in the UK.

“We need to address the huge housing pressures facing our city and we’re doing this with one of the biggest new-build programmes in Scotland,” she said.

The number of people living in the capital has increased by 14 per cent since 2005 bringing the city’s total population to 489,000.

New housing must be green

Cllr Campbell said the new homes would generate seven times less carbon than the average existing home.  Edinburgh has ambitious plans to be the UK’s first net zero-carbon city by 2030.

However, nearly half of the city’s housing, totalling 107,704 homes, was built before 1945 requiring complex upgrades to reduce energy demand.

The council has said the new affordable homes must have an energy efficiency rating of EPC B and would be setting up a carbon innovation fund in 2021 to pilot cutting edge design and retrofits.

It’s interested in adopting Passivhaus standards where heat leaving the building is captured and via a ventilator introduced to incoming fresh air. This along with high insulation standards makes these homes 90 per cent more energy-efficient than the average house.

Cllr Campbell said the investment would support the redevelopment of 50 hectares of land on the former Granton Gasworks. Around 3000 to 3,500 new homes are proposed for the site, lying 3km north of the city centre, along with commercial and recreational space.

The development framework for Granton is expected to go to committee for approval within the next few months.

Brokers Hank Zarihs Associates said property development funding new housing schemes in Edinburgh was strong thanks to the city’s growing finance and tech sector.

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