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Public to Have Say on Film Studio Plans

The public will have an opportunity this month to comment on plans to build a film and television studio at Straiton.

Developers behind plans to build a large film and television studio complex on greenbelt land to the west of Straiton, have announced that a public consultation event is to be held in January 2015.

The public will be able to view the plans for the mixed use development, including a hotel and ’employment land’, on Wednesday 14 January between 2pm and 7pm in ASDA Straiton.

On show will be Pentland Studios’ reasoning behind picking Straiton as the home for Scotland’s first purpose built film studio. The team of experienced businessmen chose the 106 acre site out of a possible 28 other pieces of land.

However when the plans are shown, the hectares of land allocated to housing will no longer be present. A reapplication by the developers in October omitted housing and moved the planned hotel to just off of the A701. Non-food retail units may also have been removed from the plans but land will still be allocated for “employment” use, theoretically encompassing either retail, leisure or office buildings.

27:9 Straiton
© Midlothian Council/Keppie Design – Site plan comparison showing changes of use from original

In August we broke the news that a syndicate of industry experts, including a former development manager from Warner Brother’s Leavesden Studios near London,  had come together to construct and operate the ‘Scottish International Film and Television Studio’ at Straiton. The Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise had tendered for a private investor to open the country’s first purpose built filming facility, with plans to open a smaller publicly funded facility should there be no private sector interest. However, Pentland Studios Ltd are keen to develop a private studio quickly, with the first four studios aiming for operation by 2017.

A total of eight studios could be erected, the largest of which will span 30,000 sq ft with a height of 70ft. A fifty acre backlot will also  allow for the creation of huge blockbuster sets, a move which the developers hope will entice even the largest of production companies.

The full plans will be shown in January. We will keep you up to date on the proceedings over on our Facebook page.