New homes at Downies village approved

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A planning application which caused much debate among Councillors at last months Area Committee meeting, was this week kiven approval by the Kincardine and Mearns area committee.

The application for five houses on land to the South of Downies village, near Portlethen, had caused much debate among Councillors who had a number of concerns over the site.

After being brought before the committee last month, Councillors decided to take part in a site visit to try and get a better idea of how the houses would fit in with others already built in the village. They were particularly concerned about how the new development would fit in with the cottages in the village.

After hearing Councilors concerns at last months meeting, the developer made alterations to the plans.

These included changing the finishing material which would be used on the houses, providing a choice of materials available to heat the houses, including the option of solar panels and an alteration of the lay-out of the access road which would ensure that cars did not shine their lights into the windows of adjacent properties.

Councillors praised the developers, Fotheringham property developers ltd, for taking the committee’s views into consideration.

However, despite this, the development still sparked strong opinions among the Councillors.

Councillor Melling said: “In this case the reporter has supported the developers. I feel in doing that, our decision has been somewhat overridden. I feel the committee has little choice.”

Councillor Melling expressed some further issues with the site which he wished to be addressed however, Councillors raised their concerns about this, as some of the changes were large and would result in another planning application.

Councillor Sullivan appeared to share Councillor Melling’s trepidation over the plans and he expressed his concern over the height of the buildings.

However the rest of the committee appeared to, after the site visit and amendments made to the plans, now support the development.

Councillor Bellarby described the plans as a “reasonable compromise” explaining that the developers had incorporated a number of things which would help the transition from the old houses to the new.

A motion of approval was lodged at this week’s meeting by Councillor Bellarby, this was then seconded band planning permission was granted for the development of five homes on the land in Downies village.