A controversial proposal to demolish a former Kinross hotel to build a retirement village has been met with 22 objections in its first month.
Juniper Residential wants to tear down the Windlestrae Hotel on Muirs Road to make way for a new 41-home development, including 33 retirement properties, eight affordable homes and a communal club lounge.
The Kinross-shire Civic Trust has already objected to the plans fearing it will result in a loss of more than 50 mature trees and will have a detrimental effect on the town’s Market Park, which sits in a conservation area.
In March, developer McCarthy and Stone abandoned its £4 million plan to clear the 55-acre site to make way for 30 retirement homes after a community backlash against the proposals.
Helen Gilmour was one of 22 objectors to raise concerns about the application since they were made available to the public last month.
Mrs Gilmour said: “I would like to object to the removal of all mature trees in the development plan.
“At a time when the Scottish Government is encouraging us to plant one million trees it is wrong to cut down mature trees simply to use the area to build houses.
I request a tree preservation order for all of these trees.”
Fellow objector Scott Gilmour also raised concerns about the felling of trees and the impact on the town’s conservation area.
He said: “A mature garden exists forming an ideal setting to the site and conservation area.
“The garden provides a habitat for birds and other species.
“The proposal would result in the loss of most established mature trees and shrubs on site.
“This is contrary to biodiversity and sustainability objectives in planning policy.
“The proposal represents over-development of the site and would impact negatively on the setting of the Kinross conservation area which includes the Market Park.”
In their objection, Kinross-shire Civic Trust highlighted that the proposal would see the felling of a mature sycamore tree on the north west of Market Park that has a British Standard Category A rating.
The development currently has four public comments in support of the proposal.
In their planning statement Juniper Residential claimed the felling of trees would be mitigated by new trees being planted as part of the development.
Mark Myles, writing for property consultant Bidwells on behalf of the developer, said: “With the exception of the cluster of trees midway along the western boundary, all trees within the hotel site are proposed for removal.
“These fall directly within the footprint of the proposed development or are located so close that their retention would not be feasible.
“Although the removal of the trees on the site is a point of concern from some residents and the Kinross Civic Trust, the tree removal is mitigated by new tree planting as part of the landscape proposals for the development.”