Additional planning applications for the former Kingspark school site will go before councillors — despite the company responsible being refused permission to build a development there.
Councillors turned down a bid from Persimmon Homes to construct 62 properties on the land at Gilburn Road at a meeting of the planning committee on March 19.
Residents and campaign groups made a number of lengthy deputations on the night and persuaded members the vacant green space was of benefit to their community.
The decision was heralded a “victory for local democracy” after councillors voted 21 to three in favour of an amendment submitted by Bailie Fraser Macpherson to refuse the developers’ application.
The committee ruled the site was not designated for housing, would increase traffic and would result in the loss of mature woodland and trees.
Despite this, Persimmon, the UK’s second-largest housebuilder, will place two applications go before councillors on Monday.
The first requests permission to conduct alterations to existing vehicle access, an extension of the existing footpath which goes through the grass area and the formation of a new footpath.
According to the application, the existing access on to Gilburn Road from the site would be “upgraded” to include a length of footpath connecting the already-refused residential development to the walkway already there.
The executive director of city development has made special dispensation with the application to bring it before committee, because of the failed housing development bid, rather than by an appointed person.
The alteration proposals have been recommended for approval by council officers, subject to conditions.
In addition, an application to re-grade land in the area will go before members.
Permission is being sought to realign the existing, uneven sloping section of land which runs across the entire site from east to west.
The application states the existing slope and embankment would be “straightened out”, providing access for the refused housing development.
Again, officers have recommended the application for approval, subject to conditions and noted no members of the public had entered objections to them.
Stephen Cragg, secretary of the Kirkton Community Safety Partnership, said: “If councillors followed the recommendations of the planners this could seriously hamper our future plans to consult with the community about two very important issues.
“This is a very disappointing and frustrating position that we could be left in.
“What is the future for the former Kingspark site now that the councillors have refused permission for housing?
“The partnership plans to do a proper consultation with the community on what we now do with this. If the planning permission for regrading a strip of land right across the middle of the site was granted, would that prevent us from doing anything in that area?
“A notable concern is that there is currently a great curved footpath suitable for wheelchair access to the area to the south of the site. Would this be destroyed?”
He continued: “The partnership is keen to do a consultation about the problems on this road, notably speeding problems and walking and cycling access problems along the south side of Gillburn road.
“Again, if planning permission were granted for the footpaths, would that effectively block any other plans along this area.
“There is also the intention of adding steps from Gillburn Road into the site. Notwithstanding the access for wheelchair issues on this, it could also act as a great exit for all the water that is currently held on the site during periods of heavy rain or snow melt.”
Persimmon Homes were approached for comment but none was forthcoming at time of going to press.