‘Dominating’ Leith tower blocks to be approved - despite noise concerns
Revised proposals to build hundreds of flats in four “dominating” tower blocks in Leith are set to be approved despite concerns over noise pollution.
S1 Developments wants to construct 338 apartments at Ocean Drive in four blocks designed as “fingers”. If the Skyliner plans are approved, two blocks will be 10 storeys high, another will be 12 storeys in height – while a fourth block, containing 123 flats alone will rise to 14 storeys high.
Despite one of the blocks being 14 storeys high, numerous other buildings in the city are taller.
The ground floor of the build to rent development will include “large areas of shared amenity space” featuring reception areas, a concierge, gyms and lounge space. Communal and private gardens will be provided between two of the blocks and at deck level between the other two buildings. One of the blocks will have a roof terrace. Developers will provide 84 flats for affordable housing – built to the same standards as the rest of the scheme.
Planners have recommended that the city council’s development management sub-committee approve the plans when it meets on Wednesday (25).
The proposals include 71 car parking spaces – while 708 cycles will be accommodated in a “three-tier” storage system. Original proposals have been amended to increase the number of cycle spaces and alter balconies.
Despite environmental protection officers recommending the proposals are refused due to “potential noise from traffic and port related noise”, planners believe this can be resolved by specific conditions.
In a report to councillors, officials said: “The proposed development is of an acceptable design, scale and density and will provide 338 new homes for the Leith Waterfront area. It will contribute to the wider regeneration of Leith Waterfront through the provision of new housing and commercial units on a vacant urban gap site and will provide a new stretch of walkway along the quayside.”
CALA won planning permission for a residential development for the neighbouring site in August 2016 and is currently under construction. The S1 plans to be considered by councillors next week have tallied up 42 objections and not a single letter of support.
Jennifer Marlborough, secretary of Leith Harbour and Newhaven Community Council, said the scheme “does not reflect the heritage of the area.”
She added: “The buildings are too tall and bulky, dominating the adjacent other developments in the area. They further erode views to the waterfront.
“The increased size of the community, a result of this application and the adjacent CALA development, will put greater pressure on the very limited accessible green space.”