Anger at ‘Trojan horse’ road plans over flats fear

Irate residents of Allan Park Crescent. Picture by JANE BARLOW
Irate residents of Allan Park Crescent. Picture by JANE BARLOW
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SHOCKED residents have hit out at “Trojan horse” plans to build an access road through their street over fears it will lead to the area being swamped with flats.

Householders in Allan Park Crescent, Slateford, claim their oasis of calm will be destroyed by developers who are using the planning law to their ­advantage.

Developers have permission to build a care home – but residents claim they have since moved the goalposts – to build new apartments instead.

Irate locals claim the proposed access road to build new apartments – which would be built on land currently occupied by one of the street’s bungalows – will lead to lost green space and create traffic chaos.

But developers have hit back saying the access route will make the neighbourhood safer.

One long-standing resident Jean Millar, 64, said: “Everybody here is absolutely devastated. One of the residents described Allan Park Crescent as a little oasis. But now they want to knock a lovely bungalow down and ruin it.”

Planning chiefs earlier granted permission for a 60-bed care home next to the street, which would help tackle expected OAP accommodation shortages.

Residents said they would not have been opposed to that but do not want to see their neighbourhood blighted by heavy traffic. Alan Dickson, chairman of Craiglockhart Community Council, said: “There will be some at one end of the spectrum who are horrified. If the access road goes ahead and a residential development goes ahead as well then the road will be used for through traffic.”

Local political leaders said the proposal should be “killed stone dead”.

Councillor Gavin Corbett, Green member for Fountainbridge and Craiglockhart, said: “I cannot see the sense of knocking down a perfectly good house for the sake of a new road, and at the cost of increasing traffic up a quiet residential street. But the biggest fear is that the road is simply a Trojan horse for yet more houses to be built on the fast-vanishing open space of Meggetland.”

Lothian Green MSP Alison Johnstone added: “My first big campaign, more than ten years ago, was in trying to defend the playing fields of Meggetland against major development.

“That battle was lost and I cannot believe that there is even the possibility of more development. This plan needs to be killed stone dead.”

Bosses at Allan Park Care Homes insisted the road would boost safety.

Mark King, associate architect for Yeoman McAllister, who is working with the developer, said: “This will provide a much safer access route for people coming in from ­Slateford Road.”