CONTROVERSIAL plans for the new Meadowbank Stadium will be considered next month after officials set for detailed proposals to be considered for approval.
But Edinburgh Council say other plans for the further redevelopment of the wider site will only be considered by the committee as “planning in principle” - and be put out for further consultation.
This means no decisions will be taken on height or density of buildings, the details for the mixed uses or the layout of the site - just the stadium itself.
The council insists extensive engagement will take place with the local community to allow opportunities for feedback.
Linda Furley of campaigners Save Meadowbank said it was good to know a date - June 29 - had been set but further engagement on plans for housing, student accommodation and a hotel on the wider site ignores the fact residents main concern is the change of use of the site from recreational to commercial.
“We would still like the application for the change of use to be objected outright - the council maintain they are opening up the forum about the wider site but our problem is they are not taking on board what people are saying and that is we do not want to see the designation of the site changed.”
The planning hearings will take place following a 12 week consultation on the council-led proposals.
Council leader Adam McVey, said: “There is no doubt this is one of the most important infrastructure projects taking place in the city today.
“Meadowbank Sports Centre has been at the heart of sport and physical activity in Edinburgh for almost 50 years. It has inspired thousands of people to get fit and get active but it really has reached the end of its lifespan. The new facility is set to build on the legacy of the past but create a modern sport and fitness facility for all levels, for future generations of residents to enjoy and live longer and healthier lives.”
“It will be financed by development of the wider site, which also provides us with a unique opportunity to support the Council’s commitment to build 20,000 affordable new homes within ten years.
“I am pleased to see a date set for the designs to be debated, and to confirm extensive engagement will take place on the wider site development if the planning applications are approved.”
Campaigner Linda Furley noted the planning application submitted earlier in the year had attracted an objection rate of over 80 per cent. Deputy Leader, Cammy Day, said the council had listened to feedback from community groups. “It is clear this is a project people in the city feel passionately about. While we have already consulted on our proposals, there is clearly a lot of public interest in the wider plan and a desire for more community engagement and we will work with the local community to create a development everyone can be proud of.”
If successful, the new £47 million stadium is slated to be complete by 2020. June Peebles, Chief Executive of Edinburgh Leisure, said: “A huge amount of work, involving many interested parties, has taken place on the design and layout of the new Meadowbank to get us to this stage. The date being set for planning applications to be considered and the prospect of a brand new Meadowbank in 2020 is a hugely exciting one. The new venue will undoubtedly pick up where the old Meadowbank left off, providing countless opportunities for future generations to participate in physical activity and sport.”