Plans revealed to replace derelict filling station with garden centre

Tentative plans have been unveiled to transform the site of an abandoned petrol filling station at Portlethen into a site for a garden centre.

The derelict site, which sits adjacent to the southbound carriageway of the A90 at Portlethen, has been described as an eyesore.

Portlethen and District Community Council were this week shown plans to transform the site, which takes in surrounding agricultural land. Landowners Macdonald Properties Ltd have not yet lodged any plans, and were looking for community feedback for the idea of a garden centre on the plot.

Addressing the meeting, Steven Martin from William Lippe Architects described the challenges the developer faces on the site. He said: “The fuel tanks have been removed and the land has been de-contaminated. But we still face a few challenges with the land - there is no access to the site for northbound traffic, and this is unlikely to change. There is also a water main running underneath the area.”

Mr Martin said that the proposed garden centre would be built at a lower level than the dual carriageway, with a green roof to minimise the impact on the surrounding area. He added that acceleration and deceleration lanes to improve access to and from the A90 would be included. He added that the centre would be about the size and style of the Inverurie garden centre. No plans have yet been lodged, although Mr Martin said they hoped to be in before Christmas. He said that he would welcome community feedback.

Community councillors largely welcomed the idea. Dorothy Main said: “In principle, getting that dreadful eyesore off of the side of the road is a wonderful idea. It’s good to see there is work being done to try to improve the site.”

However, several members expressed serious safety reservations regarding the access to the site. Chairman Ron Sharp added that paths and cycleways should be included to give locals easy access to the area.