Readers' letters: New town planned in the wrong place

An integrated new town of 7000 dwellings west of Edinburgh near the airport, a so-called twenty minute town, (News, December 2) is an ideal that cannot be realised.

Monday, 6th December 2021, 7:00 am

The pattern of employment means that the bulk of the residents will commute, and the majority of those by car.

We will simply have created a new commuter suburb increasing the overloading of the A8/ Gogarburn roundabout approach to Edinburgh.

Further, the concentration of inward transport links, road, rail and air around Edinburgh Airport is far too valuable to be wasted on housing. This area should be reserved for extensive high density commercial use.This concentration would provide economic justification for the provision of high quality public transport, reducing inward car commuting to the Edinburgh built up area. To do otherwise is the antithesis of town planning.

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David Hogg, Edinburgh.

Ross should try to be more constructive

Shame on the Tory wannabes for attempting to politicise an event of nature.

Storm Arwen was off the scale in terms of what could realisitcally be prepared for, unless umpteen millions was set aside for a 'just-in-case' scenario.

It actually had been, within budgetary constraints, allowed for. But these are the same umpteen millions that the Tory naysayers have demanded be ploughed into their cronies’ pockets to 'other use'.

Get your boots on, Douglas Ross, and get out there on the ground. At the moment, a willingness to work constructively is clearly not a Tory strongpoint.

Iain Masterton, Kirknewton.

Lochaber investment money well spent

Critics misrepresent the Scottish government’s support for the aluminium smelter at Lochaber.

Its guarantee is backed up by security over the smelter, a hydro power station and extensive land holdings.

The so-called secret deal was approved by the Scottish Parliament’s cross-party finance committee in 2016 and saved 160 jobs which has increased to over 200.

Plans to make alloy wheels failed to materialise partly due to Covid supressing the demand for new cars, but thanks to the high price for metals the smelter is running profitably and they hope to recycle aluminium at the site, producing 80,000 tonnes a year for the construction industry.

The SNP also saved the two threatened steel plants at Dalzell and Clydebridge in Lanarkshire while UK taxpayers are exposed to more than £1 billion of debt via three UK Government guarantees to the same Sanjeev Gupta and his parent company that was the only buyer of the UK’s loss-making steel plants.

Fraser Grant, Edinburgh.

School air purifiers are too expensive

Support by MSPs Michael Marra (Labour education spokesman) and Oliver Mundell (Conservative) for the Scottish Government to provide funding for air purifiers in all Scottish classrooms did not detail both the cost and the problem to be solved.

Quality air purifiers can cost around £900 each and a further £125 for replacement filters - so two units per classroom equates to £1.8m per 1000 classrooms!

The government’s own data show clearly that Covid is simply not a health issue for children. What children need is to be in school receiving education.

Alastair McCulloch, Dunblane.