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Mound, The

A road supported on an artificial earthen bank which was created over the Nor' Loch, to link Edinburgh's Old and New Towns around 1763. The Mound is said to have been constructed using more than two million cartloads of earth removed to permit the building of the foundations of the New Town, together with refuse dumped by the residents of the Old Town. It was improved to the plan of Thomas Hamilton and William Burn in 1835, creating a proper roadway linking Princes Street to the High Street (Royal Mile). Today it passes Princes Street Gardens, the Royal Scottish Academy, the National Gallery for Scotland, the Free Church of Scotland Offices, New College of the University of Edinburgh, the Assembly Hall of the Church of Scotland and the Headquarters of the Bank of Scotland.

Curiously, in 1959, an electric heating element, consisting of 47 miles (76 km) of cable, was embedded in the road surface of the Mound to prevent ice forming and ease the passage of cars and buses climbing the steep slope in the winter. This heating element is no longer used.


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