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Essential works mean long closure

Chaos for motorists as city street to close

New Leith St
New Leith St with John Lewis on the right

Motorists in Edinburgh are facing more chaos as one of city’s busiest thoroughfares is closed for 10 months to traffic to allow for essential works.

Leith Street between Calton Road and Waterloo Place will shut from 28 August to allow for gas and water pipe renewal connected to construction of the £870 million St James Centre.

The road will remain open to pedestrians, cyclists and emergency services, but a number of bus routes will need to be diverted along with other traffic in what is already a congested corner of the city centre between the Balmoral Hotel and John Lewis department store.

Martin Perry of developer TH Real Estate said: “These works will allow us to reconfigure and renew the whole Leith Street corridor and help facilitate the wider regeneration in a way that minimises disruption for residents, businesses and the travelling public.”

Work began on the new shopping centre in October after long negotiations. The 1970s centre is being demolished and the replacement development, one of the biggest construction sites in the UK, is due to be completed in 2020.

There will 85 shops, 20 restaurants, a hotel, cinema and 150 apartments.

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