A MASSIVE housing development at Brunstane has edged closer after councillors gave initial plans the green light.
A narrow vote of seven to six in favour of granting approval will now allow city council arms-length developer EDI Group to put forward more detailed blueprints for the site.
Eric Adair, operations and finance director at EDI, said: “We are obviously delighted by the decision, one that will go some way to addressing Edinburgh’s long-term housing supply requirements with a carefully planned, sympathetic masterplan that will create a new family-friendly neighbourhood in Edinburgh.
“EDI will continue to work with the council, local community and stakeholders throughout the development.”
As well as up to 1300 homes, including 300 affordable ones, developers have proposed a primary school and local centre with a range of community and retail uses as well as parks, allotments and play areas.
SNP councillor Sandy Howat supported the plans, and said: “The application site will bring much-needed housing to the city including over 300 affordable homes.
“Of the sites available around the city, Brunstane has the unique advantage of train access – we should of course be encouraging non-car transport and coupled with cycling storage at the stations and green open space walking routes, this was a welcome application.
“Preserving the character of Newhailes House with considerate open views to and from Brunstane House across the site, were clear amenity advantages for the new residents.
“This is a welcome addition to Edinburgh as a great place to live, work and play.”
Local residents who campaigned against the plans said they were disappointed by the result.
Colin Robb, of campaign group Brunstane Residents, said: “The close vote is encouraging as it puts down a marker of the concerns we have raised throughout this process – not many go that close to the wire.
“Once an application like this has gone through in principle it is difficult to pull it back. We will be holding them to account on the promises they have made, such as building a bridge over the burn.”
And Labour’s Cllr David Walker accused EDI of failing to give guarantees on the safety of building on the site.
He said: “Guarantees were also not given about whether the transport link through the site can be delivered.
“I will continue to work alongside local people to question, scrutinise and oppose the full planning applications for this site.”