Edinburgh Gateway


Edinburgh Gateway Station was a large development proposed within Edinburgh Airports safeguarding zone and close to 12/30 runway. This was the airport's secondary cross runway and active at the time. It had no Instrument Landing System, and utilised for the operation of aircraft using visual approach only. It was critical to ensure the development did not have any structures or parts of the building penetrate the Obstacle Limitation Surfaces (OLS) around the airport, as this may cause danger to aircraft either in the air or on the ground.

The Challenge

A number of challenges were faced during the consultation of this project:

  • Due to the location of Edinburgh Gateway Station, the building infringed the take off and approach safeguarding surface of the 12/30 runway

  • The proposed building was also within 13km wildlife bird circle, and the type of room design would causes an issue for attracting birds/wildlife to this development

  • The lighting also had the potential to confuse to pilots as part of the aeronautic ground lighting with the proximity of the building to the runway, especially as this is a visual approach runway only

  • The proposed development was potentially within a Public Safety Zone (PSZ) which is a safeguarded area at either end of the runway, restricting any developments to minimise the risk of death or injury in the event of an aircraft accident on take-off or landing

  • The location of the building has an increased risk of causing building induced turbulence or wind shear which would affect aircraft on take-off or landing.

The Process

The first step in the process, was to carry out a full assessment of the proposed Edinburgh Gateway Station to ensure that it had no safeguarding issues:

  • The colour, light and pattern of the proposed building was highlighted as a risk for night and during period low visibility operations at Edinburgh Airport to design the lighting specification which me the requirements of (regulation) in order to not dazzle or confuse pilots

  • The building had to be re-designed at an angle to ensure it is under the height of the safeguarding surface and eliminate the risk of impact on navigational aids utilised by the airport

  • The development was restricted to have no areas of water such as reservoirs, lakes, ponds and wetlands as well as the site having strict rules for the disposal of any commercial waste including sewage disposal, to discourage any bird activity to the site

  • Large landscaping schemes were also restricted

  • The building design was not allowed to obscure in any way of the approach and runway lights.

  • The CAA and Edinburgh Airport assessed the restriction of the PSZ and concluded that the development would not be an issue in the proposed location

  • The building structure was assessed for induced turbulence/wind shear which resulted in having no impact to aircraft on the takeoff or landing operation.

Edinburgh Gateway Station was approved during the planning stage by Edinburgh Airport. It was key for the developers to consult prior to any planning application submitted to reduce the likelihood of it being objected to at this final stage of the process.