Edinburgh World Heritage - News Article


Scotland Street Tunnel Update

The project to regenerate the old Scotland Street railway tunnel into a recreation area for local young people has started.

Feb 20, 2010

The first phase of rejuvenating the area around the Scotland Street Tunnel and the adjacent King George V Park began in early February. Local councillors, residents, police and council officers have developed the proposal in collaboration with architect Andrew McRae of Simon Laird Associates.

Elph, a local graffiti artist famed throughout Europe, was invited late last autumn to collaborate with young people from the area and create artwork for the wall blocking the northern entrance to the tunnel. A couple of weeks ago, the first bricks came down from the swing of a sledgehammer by Jared Gibb who was one of the teens involved.

Judy Conn, secretary of the Friends of King George V Park who were involved in the development of the scheme, also came to witness the first works towards a long anticipated regeneration of the park.

A part of the painted brickwork, and an autographed photograph of the complete artwork, will be given as a token for any donations to the project, on the initiative of Callum McLeod, part of the Inverleith Community Learning and Development Team based at Broughton High School. If you are interested in supporting this cause, please contact Callum or his colleague Anne Brown, 0131 3326316.

Callum McLeod said: “I think it’s really great to have this sort of project happening in a community.  It’s really obvious that there is a lot of support for through the number of people offering to help.  It’s also great to watch young people’s eyes lighting up when they realise that it’s actually happening and the support is generated because the community values them.   It’s a perfect example of the type of project which Community Learning & Development can get involved which is bringing a whole community together”

Iron materials from the wall will also be recycled, and the efforts of Council Community Service by Offenders projects then profit local charities.

After the initial works are complete the plans, through the installation of a covered space with seating and lighting, are to give young people and other visitors to the park a place to socialise in a safe and intergenerational environment.    It’s also hoped that a terraced performance area which allows small performances, and a sports area can be created in the future through the longer terms plans of the project.

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