Lloyds Banking Group has accepted a bid to buy land for the new Boroughmuir High School in the Fountainbridge area from The City of Edinburgh Council.
The Council has secured ‘preferred bidder’ status meaning the site will be bought following approval from the Full Council at its meeting on 24 November 2011. Assuming that the missives are concluded by then, the purchase will be finalised by 2012.
A full consultation will take place in the New Year regarding the proposal to move the school to Fountainbridge. Potential new sites for Boroughmuir have been under consideration since The Scottish Government announced part funding for a new school last December. The Government will provide funding for up to two-thirds of the cost of replacing the school on a like-for-like basis.
City Education Leader, Councillor Marilyne MacLaren, said:- ”I’m delighted that we have moved a step closer to securing a new home for Boroughmuir and to achieving our commitment to build three new secondary schools for Edinburgh. The school has been on the re-build list for many years and the school community had almost given up hope of finding a suitable site. The Fountainbridge site will allow the school to be developed within a city centre location in a unique and special learning environment on the Union Canal. We want to design another school of the future for Edinburgh where learning and teaching, the school ethos and the school community are at the heart of the development.”
The Fountainbridge site is at the bottom of Viewforth, 500 metres from the existing school building. Boroughmuir High school would be developed on the same basis as James Gillespie’s and Portobello High, with input from educational design specialists. The current plans aim to create schools for the future, built around the principles of the Curriculum for Excellence, while offering the look and feel of a modern university campus.
Although the new site would be the recommended option, the legally required consultation process would also include the option of refurbishing and extending the existing high school building. Potential arrangements for the transfer period have yet to be identified, but will likely be a temporary accommodation ‘village’ for up to three years.