Councillors reject Mains of Cowie plans

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Plans for a development at Mains of Cowie, including a supermarket, primary school and 400 homes were this week rejected by councillors.

At the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee meeting held on Tuesday at Viewmount, local councillors agreed with Planning Officers’ recommendation of refusal and refer the Stewart Milne application to full council.

The application for a mixed-use development, including residential dwellings, community and retail facilities, a primary school, petrol filling station and associated access routes and landscaping on land to the north, east and west of Mains of Cowie, Stonehaven, was submitted to Aberdeenshire Council in October 2014.

Last week the Mearns Leader reported that representatives from Stewart Milne had contacted Aberdeenshire Council and Stonehaven and District Community Council suggesting that as a permitted variation they may limit residential units to 250.

A council planning spokesperson said on Tuesday that this variation wouldn’t have made a difference to a number of reasons for their recommendation for refusal.

A Pre-Determination hearing about the plans took place at the end of April.

Members of the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee were given the chance to comment on the plans before it goes to Full Council for a final decision.

Local councillor Peter Bellarby said at the meeting: “We have a large number of objectors. They were overwhelmingly of the opinion that this development is not right and should be refused.”

Cllr Bellarby put forward a motion that the Area Committee agree with the planning officers recommendation of refusal and refer to the full council.

In a report to the councillors planning officers stated: Due to its scale, composition and situation within the visual envelope of Stonehaven the proposal is considered to have a detrimental impact on the existing landscape character and setting of Stonehaven and on the valued Black Hill.

“At the present time, the social and economic benefits of the proposed development are not considered to outweigh the agricultural value of this site. The proposed site requires to be served by a new access, on to the B979 public road. It has not been demonstrated that the required access will not have significant transport impacts on existing and committed transport infrastructure. Furthermore it has not been demonstrated that the site can be made convenient for pedestrians, cyclists and public transport.”