Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Curriehill School site

At today's meeting of the Council's Finance and Resources Committee the decsion was taken to sell Curriehill School site to a developer for a "retail foodstore", a supermarket to you and me, albeit probably a relatively small one at around 20,000 sq ft.

The report can be read on this link
http://cpol.edinburgh.gov.uk/getdoc_ext.asp?DocId=142884 . I moved that a final decision be delayed so that we could get a report on the possible impact on existing retail/shops in the area. Unfortunately, I lost the vote and the sale was approved. The issue of impact on the local community will now be assessed through the planning process and we shall have to carefully monitor this to ensure we can get the best deal possible for Currie.


Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

According to the Edinburgh Planning Department, the City Local Development Plan for our area specifically rules out a large retail site as appropriate for the location.

Can Mr Henderson discuss what legal weight this Development Plan carries? Surely it was based on legitimate research which is still valid only a year (?) after it was adopted. Perhaps we can use this information in fighting the proposal early in the planning stages.

Also, would the meeting last week where the sale was approved have been open to members of the local community council or members of the public? This may be helpful for other sites at such an early stage.

Ricky Henderson said...

Many thanks for the comments. I'll be attending the meeting tonight.

Planning policy will now be used to ascertain whether any planning application is deemed acceptable.

I am advised that Policy R6 (copied below) is the relevant policy for the anticipated application. We'll obviously have to follow the planning process very carefully over the next few months.

"Policy R6 - Edge-of-centre Retail Development

Proposals for retail development will be supported on suitable sites adjacent to the local centres and frontages identified in Policy R1, provided:

proposals would be appropriate in scale and character; and
it can be shown that no suitable site is available in the adjacent local centre or frontage, or in any other such areas within the catchment area of the proposal."

The complete plan can be viewed at http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/rwelp

Regarding attendance at meetings, most Council Committees, including Finance and Resources are held in public and anyone can attend and ask to be heard as a deputation on specific items if so desired.

Hope the above is of some use, get back to me of you want to discuss further.

Ricky H

Anonymous said...

I would welcome a retail store to the area, Scotmid are very poor and its about time the school was sold as its an eyesore. If it is a small store then the good shops like the Butchers and the card shop should not have any worries, however the Scotmid would, unless of course its the Scotmid who have bought the land, I hope not.

Ricky Henderson said...

Thanks for your comment. It would be fair to say that there has been a mixed reaction to the decision to sell the site for retail and you are not alone in welcoming the prospect of additional choice. If it does go ahead we need to make sure that maximum benefit for the community is delivered.
Ricky H

Anonymous said...

As a member of the Finance and Resource Committee Mr Henderson can request details of the remaining offers. It is specifically stated in the minutes of the meeting that took place in August. I would strongly request that you look into this at this time. Obviously the details are confidential. You can still use this information. If the community fights this at the planning stages, it would be useful for you to use your influence and acquired knowledge to let it be known that this is not the only option available for revenue generation. It cannot be a case of sell to the highest bidder with no consideration of the repercussions.

Ricky Henderson said...

Anonymous, many thanks for your comment. The decision to sell the site has been taken by the F&R Cttee as reported above, in spite of me moving for a delay. However, your point is well made regarding the other alternatives. Should the supermarket proposal not be delivered, for whatever reason, (Planning perhaps ?) then other options would have to be considered.
Ricky H