THE last major gap site in central Edinburgh is set to be filled by a massive development of offices and hotels, according to a report going before city councillors next week.

Prudential Assurance has submitted a proposal of application notice for full planning permission to develop the former Haymarket Goods yard at the west side of Morrison Street, opposite Haymarket Station.

The reported £280 million development will see much-needed grade A offices, retail and leisure facilities on the 1.7 hectare (3.8 acre) site which was bought last year by M & G Real Estate, part of the Prudential Group, for around £49m.

The site, which currently houses car parking, has a long and chequered history of unfulfilled plans for developments of one kind or another dating back more than decade. In 2009, after a public inquiry, Scottish ministers refused permission for the initial planned development because of the impact it would have on the prominent gateway to the city centre, and on the city’s skyline.

It has long been recognised, however, as a very valuable site for development as it sits alongside the Exchange financial centre and is close to the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.

The trams development and the refurbishment of Haymarket Station have also made the area much more attractive to developers.

A report by planning officials will go before councillors on the Development Committee next Wednesday. It states: “An application for full planning permission will be submitted for the redevelopment of site comprising hotels, offices, retail, leisure, public houses, restaurants, car parking and associated works.”

Among other comments, the officials note that “the site is not within, but is immediately adjacent to, both the west end conservation area, which runs along the north side of Morrison Street, and the New Town conservation area, which runs along the north side of Haymarket Terrace.

“Likewise the site bounds the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh world heritage site, on Morrison Street, but does not lie within its confines.”

A public exhibition on the development will be held at nearby Hilton Grosvenor on February 21.