Slateford flats near Water of Leith given go-ahead by Edinburgh Council

Plans for flats to be built on Lanark Road in Slateford, Picture: McLaren Murdoch & Murdoch / Edinburgh Council
Plans for flats to be built on Lanark Road in Slateford, Picture: McLaren Murdoch & Murdoch / Edinburgh Council
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COUNCILLORS have given proposals to build 50 flats near the Water of Leith the thumbs up after developers made improvements to their initial plans.

The John Clark Motor Group has been given planning permission to knock down their existing car dealership on the junction of Lanark Road and Craiglockhart Avenue in the Slateford area of the Capital to make way for the apartments.

50 flats will be built on the corner of Lanark Road and Craiglockhart Avenue, Picture: McLaren Murdoch & Murdoch / Edinburgh Council

50 flats will be built on the corner of Lanark Road and Craiglockhart Avenue, Picture: McLaren Murdoch & Murdoch / Edinburgh Council

The flats will be provided in two separate blocks on the site – close to both the Water of Leith and the Union Canal. The accommodation will consist of two studio apartments, 16 one-bedroom apartments, 23 two-bedroom apartments and nine three-bedroom apartments.

Block A will be four stories high while Block B will reach five stories in height. Both blocks will be set-back from the pavements at Lanark Road and Craiglockhart Avenue – with apartments facing the junction further set-back behind a newly-created area of public space. A total of 12 affordable apartments will be provided within Block B.

Developers will provide 20 car parking spaces including two accessible spaces – as well as four electric charging spaces. The pavement along Craiglockhart Avenue will be widened to three metres as part of the overhaul.

In a report to the city council’s development management sub-committee, officers recommended the proposals for approval -stating it will “make a positive contribution to the local area by bringing a previously developed site in to residential use”.

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The report added: “The density, layout, scale, materials and overall design concept is appropriate within this sustainable location.

“The proposal will achieve a good environment for future occupiers and will not have an unacceptable adverse impact on the amenity of neighbouring properties or the setting of the Union Canal.

“The site is in a sustainable location for public transport and active travel with access to local amenities.”

The Edinburgh Urban Design Panel, which gives design advice on applications, welcomed the plans – which have been down-scaled from an original scheme that included 57 flats and less green space.

Planning convener, Cllr Neil Gardiner said: “I’m happy to move this application and thank the urban design panel for bringing their contribution to a scheme which is a lot better than the first scheme.

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“It creates a softer corner, it creates a good public through-route there and it creates very good amenity space. In the past, the committee has raised how useful some amenity space is – this creates a good altogether area for the residents to use.

“This one increases the density and actually creates a very good environment for the future residents and promotes active travel. There’s a lot that’s good about it.”

Cllr Chas Booth also backed the scheme.

He said: “It seems to me the urban design panel were quite scathing about the first phase and that most, if not all of their comments have been taken on board – a single block is now two blocks, it’s a lot further set back and they have reduced the massing.

“I’m supportive of the application as it stands.”

Cllr Booth also called on the developers to “explore the feasibility” of extending shared pedestrian and cycling paths from the site to both the Water of Leith and Union Canal.

He added: “I think we need to be ambitious, I think we need to be pushing developers to provide active travel.”

Councillors unanimously granted planning permission for the proposals.