There are plans for some 3,450 new homes and a mixture of business, shopping and community facilities to be built on the 900 acre site over the next 15 years.
The first phase involves the construction of 550 houses over the next five years, with Miller Homes and Barratt contracted to start work on 180 of these in the autumn.
Cabinet secretary for infrastructure and capital investment Alex Neil visited the site at Winchburgh, near Broxburn, to cut the first turf yesterday. He said: “As one of Scotland’s largest construction projects, this development in West Lothian illustrates how co-operation between the public and private sector can benefit the local community and stimulate the wider economy.
“I am also pleased that the project managers, Sigma Capital, including their first phase contractors, Realm Construction, have pledged to employ as many local people as possible as the development proceeds.”
Scottish Building Federation chief executive Michael Levack was also there and added: “The Scottish construction sector warmly welcomes this investment in West Lothian, which is set to create hundreds of much-needed jobs. Latest ONS figures published last week show that construction remains one of the hardest-hit areas of the economy, with output down 7.4%. As a key driver of the Scottish economy, a recovery in construction is essential for sustainable economic growth.
“The Scottish Building Federation strongly supports the Scottish government’s ambitions to bring forward capital investment in ‘shovel ready’ projects wherever possible.”