Allan Park campaigners win as council rejects plan

Allan Park Crescent residents get their message across. Picture: Ian Georgeson
Allan Park Crescent residents get their message across. Picture: Ian Georgeson
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CONTROVERSIAL plans to bulldoze a house on a quiet residential street to make way for a new road have been unanimously rejected by the council.

The scheme would have seen a bungalow on Allan Park Crescent, Slateford, knocked down and replaced with an access road leading to a proposed care home in the area behind Meggetland sports complex.

But at a packed three-hour council meeting yesterday, the plans were slammed as “completely illogical” and against the city’s own housing policy.

Developer Allan Park Ltd already has consent to build a 60-bed care home, but wanted to reduce this to a 44-bed complex to be constructed alongside 14 new townhouses – demolishing the bungalow to provide better access to the site.

Sean Black, managing director of Allan Park Ltd, yesterday warned he would appeal the council’s decision to throw out the changes, but residents said they were “over the moon”.

Locals argued the demolition and new road would increase traffic, making the area dangerous for children to play.

Gail Redpath, who lives on the street, said: “I am so overjoyed that the panel committee listened to the residents and their concerns.

“It’s been such an emotional day and there has been loads of tears but now the balloons are up in Allan Park and we are ready to celebrate.

“We will continue to fight this right until the very end.”

Residents packed the public gallery during yesterday’s meeting, with cheers erupting when the decision was read out. Almost 1700 objections were received ahead of the vote.

Speaking after the meeting, Green councillor Gavin Corbett, who represents the area, said he was “delighted” the committee had “voted unanimously to throw out an application to demolish a perfectly good home”.

He said: “The developer had said that he needed the road for a new care home. But the developer already has permission for a 60-bed care home with an access road and he actually wanted to reduce the size of the facility to 44 beds.

“Against that the committee took into account increased traffic, road safety, impact on the cycle path, reduction in open space and, most of all that a home was being demolished with no benefit for the local community.

“The developer has said he’ll appeal. Given the unanimous decision, the strength of local feeling and the sheer weight of objections, I hope he’ll step back from that.”

Miles Briggs, Scottish Tory MSP candidate for Edinburgh Southern, said: “This is a victory for common sense and will be welcomed by residents in Allan Park Crescent who under the proposals would have seen an access road built through their street.

“I’d like to congratulate all those involved in the community campaign and I am pleased the council has listened and rejected the proposal.”

alistair.grant@edinburghnews.com