A new future for Rosebery House

Regeneration and job creation from Aviva Investors


Frequently asked questions

Rosebery House Frequently Asked Questions

Can the existing building be refurbished?

The existing building is in a desirable location, however the office accommodation is of a poor quality, and the age and condition of building systems and services are at the end of their lifespan. The building in its current form is undesirable and has already been upgraded as far as it reasonably can in the past 15-20 years with any further upgrade or refurbishment no longer making practical or economic sense.

What is Net Carbon Zero?

In seeking to attain a Net Zero Carbon rating, every element of the proposed building is being carefully considered to ensure that the building is Net Zero Carbon in its operation. This includes minimising the use for heating and cooling with a ‘Building Optimisation’ computer modelling conducted. A blue roof system will also manage and recycle rainwater.

Can any of the existing building be reused?

Given the age and condition of the building, combined with the constrained ‘island’ site with near neighbours and infrastructure, the proposed approach merits a wholescale redevelopment of the entire site to make the most of this attractive and sustainable location. In progressing with demolition of the existing building, all efforts will be employed to maximise recycling and beneficial reuse of the demolished materials, however there is at this stage, unlikely to be any prospect of materials being reused on site.

Does the new building have a user signed-up?

Not at this stage, however, Aviva has appointed joint marketing and letting agents JLL and Cushman and Wakefield. Due to lack of pipeline supply offices coming through in the next 3-4 years, the agents do anticipate there will be strong demand for a building designed to meet the future sustainable demands of businesses and the public sector.

The new building is taller than the existing Rosebery House, why is this?

The building occupies one of the best locations in Edinburgh in terms of its profile, accessibility and therefore sustainability credentials. Situated at the edge of the Exchange District, and immediately adjacent to the Haymarket interchange with excellent walking, cycling, train, tram, and bus connectivity, the site is ideally placed to deliver a replacement, modern, appropriately specified office proposal to take advantage of this location.The existing building is ‘of its time’ and does not currently reflect the townscape and streetscape of the surrounding area. In looking at redevelopment proposals, it makes sense to maximise the opportunity, and our approach seeks to strike an appropriate balance in this regard given the potential of the site, and the sensitivities of it in terms of adjacent heritage designations and key views into and out of the World Heritage Site.

What Impact will Covid 19 have on office demand?

It is still unclear what long-term impact Covid 19 will have on office demand, whilst home working may reduce the need for some businesses, other businesses will seek more space to permit greater social distancing and alternative working environments within the office. It is clear, however, that many businesses are concerned that remote working will have a detrimental impact on culture, how they attract and mentor talent, innovate and evolve and the impact on levels of productivity. There is also the suggestion that cities like Edinburgh with one of the highest levels of commuting by foot or bike will benefit over major cities such as London which relies so heavily on public transport. For Edinburgh to compete in attracting new growth and retaining its premium occupiers and jobs it must be able to offer buildings of scale and quality like Rosebery House. Recent pre-commitments in the city centre to Baillie Gifford (280,000 sq ft, growing from 190,000sq ft ), Aberdeen Standard (108,000 sq ft), and HMRC (190,000 sq ft) demonstrate this demand.

Will the building include car parking?

The current building has [34] car parking spaces, however despite the increase in the floorspace proposed, the new proposals are intended to minimise private car use. Car parking will be limited to a very small number of spaces, (up to 6) and these will be designed as accessible spaces, and with EV charging facilities.

What other facilities / amenities will the building have?

The building will be designed as a modern flexible office environment, and to react to the market in terms of a range of potential occupiers. The building will have [220] cycle parking spaces, with a number of electric bike charge points as well as plentiful showers and changing facilities for staff use. The lower floors of the building will include additional space which may be fitted out as a gym facility for users of the building.

The entrance area will include flexible layouts, and the potential for a small café area and co-working zone.

The rooftop areas and terraces provide the potential to provide communal meeting and event spaces for use by all occupiers and taking advantage of views across the city.
The final configuration of the building facilities and amenities will be determined prior to construction and fit out, and to meet market conditions and expectations at that time.

Will there be active uses at ground floor level?

Beyond the active reception area, at this stage it is not proposed to include any additional retail or commercial uses at ground floor level. It is hoped that the improved environment, footfall and public realm will continue to act as a catalyst for more shops, cafes, and restaurants to open up and flourish along Haymarket Terrace and fill some of the voids that exists at present.

Local Resident Q&A, September 2020


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