Historic car factory to go?

By Lindsay Gale09 May 2008

The production block of an historic Edinburgh, UK, car factory may be demolished as part of the £1 billion (US$2 billion) redevelopment of part of the city’s waterfront.

The B-listed Madelvic Car Factory, which started production in 1898, is believed to Britain’s first purpose designed car factory.

It closed only two years later because the electric car that was produced there failed to appeal to drivers of that time. Its history over the next 25 years was chequered, but in 1925 it was bought by United Wire, who modified the production block and used it to produce industrial wire cloth and non-ferrous wire.

Regeneration agency Waterfront Edinburgh acquired the site in 2000 and with development partner Buredi has applied for a Listed Building Consent to demolish the production block.

According to Waterfront’s head of planning, Alan Cooper: “The site was given B-list status for its social and historical, not architectural significance. This block is at the very centre of Waterfront’s development vision. It is acting as a barrier to development and although we are keen to retain the history of Granton, we do not want that to hold back its future.”

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