Tag Archives: Planning

LCCC January 2021 minutes

Meeting highlights

  • death of John Hein, resignation of John Tibbitt, co-option of Lucy Watters
  • Planning: Dryden St area, Bonnington area
  • various governance matters
  • LCCC response to Public Spaces Management Plan
  • Transport & clean streets: spaces for people, tram-works
  • Licensing: various matters

Minutes of Leith Central Community Council ordinary meeting, held via MS Teams, on Monday 18 January 2021 at 7:00pm

Actions and decisions are red italic. nem con means that no-one spoke or voted against a decision.

1 Welcome, apologies

1.a Attendees

  • LCCC voting members: Jack Caldwell, Alan Dudley, Charlotte Encombe, Nick Gardner, Sheila Kennedy, Ian Mowat,
Harald Tobermann, Lucy Watters, John Wilkinson,
Amy Woodgate
  • LCCC ex-officio and non-voting members: Cllr Amy McNeese-Mechan (Leith Walk ward), Bruce Ryan (minutes secretary)
  • Others: Michael Trail (all Leith Links CC), Alan McIntosh (The Spurtle), 6 other residents/visitors

1.b Apologies

Pierre Forissier (Leith Central CC), Cllr Susan Rae (Leith Walk ward)

2 Welcome, introductions, attendance, apologies

2.a to note: declarations of interest in any items on the agenda

A resident: I have an interest in item 6.c below, due to my co-authorship of the relevant Edinburgh Design Panel report.

2.b to note: J Hein’s death (24/12/20)

The chair noted John Hein’s service on LCCC (~12 years), including a long spell as chair, and that he will be sorely missed.

2.c to note: J Tibbitt resignation (7/1/21)

The chair noted that John Tibbett has now moved out of Edinburgh and so has to resign from LCCC. He probably also has to resign as chair of the Edinburgh Association of Community Councils.

2.d to agree: to notify CEC of the above changes

The chair noted that Lucy Watters is standing for co-option to LCCC.

  • Decision: L Watters was co-opted nem con
  • Action: B Ryan to remind LCCC office-bearers of the requirements for co-option
  • Action: chair to notify CEC of these changes.

2.e to agree: order of business below

Decision: agreed nem con

3 Approval of Minutes of 16 November 2020 meeting

Approved as is (proposed A Woodgate, seconded S Kennedy)

4 Matters Arising from previous minutes (and not included on agenda below)

Item 6a:

  • F Gerlach has resigned from LCCC.
  • Action: A Dudley’s committee roles to be discussed when he is present. (He joined the meeting after this point.)

5 Community Police Officer’s Report

No report provided

6 Planning

6.a to note: restrictions to CEC posting physical planning notifications

H Tobermann: the posting of physical planning notifications has been suspended by CEC, so fewer people may learn of proposed developments.

6.b to agree: to write to CEC and developers deploring deterioration of listed Dryden Street buildings, poor maintenance of Dryden Bridge footpath and damage to bridge

H Tobermann: this is about the old tram sheds to the rear of the Shrub Place site. 2 red brick buildings, one of which was of very fine quality, are badly deteriorating due to negligence by the developers. (They are actually obliged to look after the buildings.) Similarly, the developers have not maintained the Dryden Bridge footpath, so that it is badly dented, water-logged and collecting debris, and have blocked it such that it does not permit coronavirus-related physical distancing.

  • Action: H Tobermann to write to CEC and the developer

6.c to note: update on latest Platform/Bonnington plans (20/01932/FUL) and deadline for comments (23-01-21)

  • J Wilkinson: We recently met with Platform, who have made changes to their plans. Changes include taking planned buildings further back from the Water of Leith (WoL), adding more greenery, reducing some planned building-heights, and redesigning planned rooflines to resemble older industrial buildings. The Biscuit Factory would be retained, as would the building opposite it, so the new buildings will be around them. Some retail units would be created on Bonnington Rd, and construction would be finished around 2024. Affordable housing would be ‘pepper-potted’ around the estate, and Platform would manage the finished development.
  • J Wilkinson: the developers assume that residents will be in their late 20s to early 30s, mostly not owning cars.
  • I Mowat: I welcome the plan to retain the Biscuit Factory as a community asset/hub.
  • H Tobermann: there are some related transport matters:
  • The proposed number of flats has been reduced from ~560 to 453. 1000 bike-parking spaces would be provided.
  • 8% on-site car-parking would be provided (down from originally-planned 15%). Some will have e-car charging facilities.
  • All of this is in the context of a forthcoming controlled parking zone (CPZ) in this area.
  • H Tobermann: none of the above is a done deal – the application will go to CEC committee in February 2021, so the deadline for comments is 23 January. LCCC Planning committee welcomes the reductions in height and number of flats, and the increased space between the flats and WoL, but it is slightly concerned about the CPZ potentially not being in place in time – it suggests that establishment of the CPZ should be part of the planning conditions required by CEC. It welcomes the ‘pepper-potting’ of affordable housing, but is concerned that they will be truly affordable – there should be transparency around rental prices.
  • H Tobermann: construction would start in December 2021 at the earliest, lasting for ~30 months. No flats will be released until the development is complete, a factor LCCC Planning welcomes.
  • Action: H Tobermann to submit comment that the new plans are broadly acceptable, so long as the above concerns are met

6.d to note: any other Planning matters relevant to LCCC area

Action: P Forissier to brief H Tobermann about other planning matters

7 LCCC Governance and Office Bearers’ reports

7.a to note: need for updated publication policy and procedures (website, Twitter, Facebook), learning from recent ‘social’ media issues

The chair recalled adverse online reactions to LCCC social media commemorations of John Hein, due to some of his activities outwith his LCCC work.

  • A Woodgate: comms team has been working to learn from this, e.g. not always auto-tweeting/auto-face-booking new blog posts.
  • Action: LCCC comms team to learn from this, and devise a comms policy. Currently it is concentrating on implementing MS Teams, which has taken more time than anticipated.

7.b to note: verbal report on webinar Scottish Open Government: Delivering on the Scottish Government’s Programme of Reforms

J Wilkinson: I attended this event, organised by MacKay Hannah and chaired by Richard Kerley of QMU. Speakers included:

J Wilkinson: The main benefit of this event was increased awareness of what is being done in such areas, and by whom.

Chair: I urge LCCC members to attend and get involved with such events and happenings – they affect us!

7.c to note: Office Bearers’ decision to set up Clydesdale Internet Banking (T&Cs) and IT spend (MS Teams)

I Mowat: this internet banking has been set up, but there are some issues about the email addresses to be used to do it. Costs per transaction are significantly less than costs for posting cheques, although such costs are very minor.

7.d to note: Treasurer’s report

See item 7c above

7.e to note: reports from other Office Bearers and LCCC groups

7.e.i Chair

  • C Encombe: I attended the Cockburn Association’s (CA) lecture on development of the Edinburgh Festival: the balance around commercial enterprise is now out of kilter, because (after it was found that money could be made) hotel organisations and airports were invited to join in. LCCC members are encouraged to attend CA events.
  • Cllr McNeese-Mechan: this is the opinion of one organization. Other data strongly suggests that the majority of Edinburgh’s population are positive towards Edinburgh’s festivals. (I understand that many of these do not have the Festival ‘on their doorsteps’.) Also the festivals are a huge employment source, which is very important considering current financial challenges to public finances. Hence the question is ‘how do we build back better?’, focusing on environmental stability – including transport and holiday-making (and ‘green payback’). Such questions have been important to festival boards before coronavirus. Performers need to earn in order to eat.
  • C Encombe: it has been found that 70-80% of the local population enjoy the Science Festival, but the Edinburgh International Festival (EIF) attracts only 15 to 20% of Edinburgh’s population, so it is right to look at how much of this is for Edinburgh.
  • Cllr M-M: understood – for example opera has a relatively small market. However the free EIF events have mass draw. It is right to understand how statistics are derived.

7.f to note: update on LCCC representation on outside bodies

H Tobermann: Now J Tibbett has resigned from LCCCC, LCCC no longer has a direct link with Edinburgh Association of CCs.

  • Action: LCCC to discuss this matter – and the Festivals – at a later meeting – or possibly in a separate Teams meeting.

8 Parks & Green Spaces

8.a to note: Draft Submission to Public Space Management Consultation and deadline for comments (20-01-2021)

  • N Gardner: LCCC would prefer large events to be held on durable surfaces, and that maximum areas of parks (~20%) be used for events. CEC should aim for better financial details, e.g. taking a minimum %age of events’ profits. CEC should avoid clashes with school holidays. CEC should be able to fine organisers if events cause damage. Many European cities, which are compact and have narrow streets like Edinburgh, stretch their street markets across the cities.
  • J Caldwell: the submission should also mention population density
  • B Ryan: NTBCC has drafted a comprehensive submission, including comments on governance – I can ask them to forward a copy to NG in case this helps the final submission.
  • Action: N Gardner to update, then submit, LCCC’s response

8.b to note: verbal update on Powderhall Railway Path

H Tobermann: CEC obtained funds for a feasibility study, and Jacobs has done some work on this. However, the lead CEC officer has been working on Spaces for People matters. Also Network Rail has not been very forthcoming. The report is now promised ‘soon’, but no firm date has been given.

8.c to note: Friends of Pilrig Park report

J Wilkinson: FoPP’s AGM is due soon.

8.d to note: other Park Friend’s reports

  • S Kennedy: the state of parks (including Montgomery St park) is poor due to much additional use, and discarded masks.
  • N Gardner: clean-ups are difficult due to need for physical distancing.
  • L Watters: I have started a campaign to support community litter-pickers, including taking ‘before’ and ‘after’ photos. There is currently insufficient bin-collection, and hence increased concern.

9 Transport & Clean Streets

9.a to agree: joint email with NTBCC regarding SfP measures (one-sided cyclepath) on London Road and CEC’s ability to maintain these new spaces adequately (snow/ice)

H Tobermann. NTBCC’s transport convenor has approached me about joint work on this. The proposed cycle-path would be one-way only, and not tied into other cycle-paths. Additional snow- and litter-clearance may be hampered by bollards. The island on London Rd does not support physical difference, but is not covered by Spaces for People. London Rd is the boundary between LCCC and NTBCC, hence the call for joint action.

  • Action: H Tobermann to undertake such joint work with NTBCC

9.b to note: verbal update on tram works and final overall impact on LCCC area

H Tobermann: coronavirus regulations permitted restart of construction after the holiday. But at least 8 street-lights were non-functional during the holidays, in part because the CEC lighting team can’t easily access Leith Walk due to tram-work related impedimenta, leading to long periods of darkness. There have also been issues around bin-emptying and information-provision.

Action: These will be raised at the next CCTT/Trams-team meeting, and via other channels.

9.b.i to note: any issues that have arisen for local residents or businesses that have not been dealt with satisfactorily by the Tram Project Team

S Kennedy: the new bins on Albert St are disgusting. What can be done?

H Tobermann: CEC committed to cleaning the whole area each night, but is currently achieving ~3/4 of this, leading to overflow and other knock-on effects.

  • Action: H Tobermann to add this detail to communications with Trams Team and CEC

9.c to note: any other Transport & Clean Street matters relevant to LCCC area

none

10 Licensing

S Kennedy: LCCC has responded to ~5 licensing requests for cafés to start alcohol off-sales with food, recommending against this. Another 3 have now been received.

  • A Woodgate: this may be so that cafés can sell via Just Eat, Deliveroo etc.
  • B Ryan: some pubs’ off-sales in the NTBCC area have caused problems due to people congregating after buying.
  • L Watters: I thought this practice had been banned, so it’s surprising that cafés are applying to do off-sales.
  • M Traill: consumption of alcohol in public spaces is currently prohibited in tier 4 areas. Purchasing is still permitted.

There was discussion of delegation of action to LCCC Licensing committee – often there is insufficient time for requests to be discussed at LCCC meetings, due to deadlines for submission to the Licensing Board (which is sitting online).

  • Action: LCCC Licensing committee to circulate its submissions to LCCC members, possibly after submission

11 Open Forum

11.a LeithChooses

J Caldwell: LeithChooses voting opens online at LeithChooses.net on Monday 25 January, closing Sunday 31 January. Anyone who lives, works, studies or volunteers in Leith can vote.

  • Action: B Ryan to email details to LCCC members

12 AOCB

12.a Food growing strategy

  • N Gardner: I have submitted, on behalf of LCCC, to CEC’s food-growing strategy consultation. (Closing date was today.) The submission favours raised beds, growing (in private gardens) and sharing (with the community). It would be helpful if CEC sets up a scheme to collect and share such food. Indoor markets need storage facilities to be viable, and cooking facilities. Food-growing would benefit from better integration with planning processes.
  • A resident: the strategy is a city-wide initiative, required under community empowerment legislation. CEC’s consultation avoided the topic of using private gardens to grow food, because this may infringe civil liberties. The strategy would touch on food-poverty, climate change etc. Hence the theme of ‘growing local’. I have mentioned the planning system in my response to the consultation.
  • A McIntosh: Over the last two years, the Spurtle has covered a charity managing back greens to grow food when the owners could not do this. I will share this link with N Gardner.
  • L Watters: this would be of interest to the Edinburgh Edible Economy movement – please share this submission.
  • Action: NG to circulate his submission to LCCC members

12.b Leith Forever

Chair: I encourage LCCC members and followers to visit Leith Forever – it’s full of interesting information

13 Future Meetings (usually 3rd Monday of the month) and meeting topics/presentations

13.a to note: 2021: 15 February, 15 March, 19 April, 17 May (AGM)

13.b to note: future presentations and charrettes

13.b.i tbc: talk by CEC Archeology Officer and FCA on findings at 70, 72 Newhaven Road (17/01183/FUL)

LCCC January 2021 meeting agenda

  1. Welcome, introductions, attendance, apologies (19:00)
    1. to note: declarations of interest in any items on the agenda
    2. to note: J Hein’s death (24/12/20)
    3. to note: A Tibbitt resignation (7/1/21)
    4. to agree: to notify CEC of the above changes
    5. to agree: order of business below
  2. Approval of Minutes of 16 November 2020 meeting (19:05)
  3. Matters Arising from previous minutes (and not included on agenda below) (19:10)
  4. Community Police Officer’s Report (19:12)
  5. Planning (1917)
    1. to note: restrictions to CEC posting physical planning notifications
    2. to agree: to write to CEC and developers deplorring deterioration of listed Dryden Street buildings, poor maintenance of Dryden Bridge footpath and damage to bridge
    3. to note: update on latest Platform/Bonnington plans  (20/01932/FUL) and deadline for comments (23-01-21)
    4. to note: any other Planning matters relevant to LCCC area
  6. LCCC Governance and Office Bearers’ reports (19:37)
    1. to note: need for updated publication policy and procedures (website, twitter, facebook), learning from recent ‘social’ media issues
    2. to note: verbal report on webinar Scottish Open Government: Delivering on the Scottish Government’s Programme of Reforms
    3. to note: Office Bearers’ decision to set up Clydesdale Internet Banking (T&Cs) and IT spend (MS Teams)
    4. to note: Treasurer’s report
    5. to note: reports from other Office Bearers and LCCC groups
    6. to: note: update on LCCC representation on outside bodies
  7. Parks & Green Spaces (20:00)
    1. to note: Draft Submission to Public Space Management Consultation and deadline for comments (20-01-21)
    2. to note: verbal update  on Powderhall Railway Path
    3. to note: Friends of Pilrig Park report
    4. to note: other Park Friend’s reports
  8. Transport & Clean Streets (20:05)
    1. to agree: joint email with NTBCC regarding SfP measures (one-sided cyclepath) on London Road and CEC’s ability to maintain these new spaces adequately (snow/ice)
    2. to note: verbal update on tram works and final overall impact on LCCC area
      1. to note: any issues that have arisen for local residents or businesses that have not been dealt with satisfactorily by the Tram Project Team
    3. to note: any other Transport & Clean Street matters relevant to LCCC area
  9. Licensing (20:15)
  10. Open Forum[1]
  11. AOCB[2]
  12. Future Meetings (usually 3rd Monday of the month) and meeting topics/presentations
    1. to note: 2021: 2021, 15 February, 15 March, 19 April, 17 May (AGM)
    2. to note: future presentations and charrettes
      1. tbc: talk by CEC Archeology Officer and FCA on findings at 70, 72 Newhaven Road (17/01183/FUL)

[1] This agenda point allows members of the public to raise issues of public interest.

[2] This agenda point enables LCCC members to raise issues not covered by the agenda.

We are objecting to the Montgomery Street Park mast

After listening to residents and objectively looking at the proposals, our Planning working group have lodged an objection to the City of Edinburgh Council over the proposals for a mobile phone mast next to Montgomery Street Park.

20/04148/PA: Objection from Leith Central Community Council

Prior notification for electronic communication code operators. | Telecommunications
Mast North East Of Montgomery Street Park Montgomery Street Edinburgh
Leith Central Community Council objects to the application and, in accordance with the
particulars listed below, the City of Edinburgh Council should refuse the application.

Reasons

The application is contrary to the Edinburgh Local Development Plan Policy RS 7 Telecommunications

● It would not have been demonstrated that all practicable options and alternative sites
have been considered, including the possibility of using existing masts, structures and buildings and/or site sharing.
● Such evidence, including any reasons for rejection, would not have accompanied the application.
● The visual impact of the proposed 20m mast would not have been minimised through
careful siting, design and, where appropriate, landscaping.
● The application would not have demonstrated that all practicable options to minimise
impact have been explored, and the best solution identified.
● The proposal would be considerably taller than all nearby buildings and would
overwhelm the adjacent listed church at 121 Montgomery Street, Calton Centre,
Formerly Kirk Memorial Evangelical Union Church.
● The proposal would harm the natural heritage of Montgomery Street Park as it would be 5m taller than the park’s mature tree canopy..
● The application would not have provided a detailed assessment of the impact of
telecommunication waves on the health of the adjacent mature trees.
● The proposal would harm the built heritage of the city by being located on the New Town Conservation Area boundary.
● The proposal would comprise a large cluster of apparatus at its top which would add to the visual impact it would have on the New Town Conservation Area.
● The City of Edinburgh Council’s Mast Register would not have been used to check for a suitable site (“it was felt that the industry database was a more up-to-date source of
information – Planning justification statement – p1).
● A valid operational justification would not have been provided.
● An assessment of the cumulative impact of individual proposals where other
telecommunications developments are present nearby or are proposed to be located
nearby would not have been provided. Such an assessment would describe how the
cumulative effects have been considered and any negative visual impact minimised.
● The application would not have demonstrated that the site is wide enough to
accommodate the proposed equipment without impacting upon pedestrians traffic
provision.

The application is contrary to the Edinburgh Local Development Plan Policy Env 6 Conservation Areas

● The proposal would not have demonstrated that it does not adversely affect the setting
of the New Town Conservation Area.
● The application would not have provided a sufficiently detailed form for the effect of the
development proposal on the character and appearance of the area to be assessed.
● The application is not including visuals or photomontages to demonstrate the minimal
impact of the proposal.

The application is contrary to the Edinburgh Local Development Plan Policy Env 16 Species Protection

● The application, by its very nature may have a detrimental effect on European Protected
Species (EPS) covered by Habitats Regulations. Bats are often sighted in Edinburgh
parks and a full bat survey of the current status of the species and its use of the site has
not been provided.
The application is contrary to Section 59 of the Planning (Listed Buildings and
Conservation Areas) (Scotland) Act 1997
● The proposal would not have demonstrated that a special regard has been given to the
desirability of preserving listed buildings or their setting or any features of special
architectural interest which they possess.
● The proposal would not have been advertised as affecting the setting of a Listed Building
(121 Montgomery Street, Calton Centre, formerly Kirk Memorial Evangelical Union
Church)

The application is contrary to Planning Advice Note: PAN 62 Radio Telecommunications

● The application would ignore the opportunities that exist in urban areas to use small
scale equipment, to disguise and conceal equipment and sensitively install equipment on buildings and other structures.
● The application would be in a visually sensitive location within an urban area where it is particularly necessary to take positive steps to disguise or conceal equipment. Such
locations include conservation areas, scheduled ancient monuments and their settings,
listed buildings and their settings and recreational areas, eg public open spaces.

The application is contrary to National Planning Policy Guideline NPPG 19: RADIO TELECOMMUNICATIONS

● The proposal would not have demonstrated that the operators have explored alternative siting and design. Information about these enquiries should accompany every planning application. Operators should thoroughly explore alternative sites to find the solution with the least landscape impact, which may help allay public concern. Where difficulties in site acquisition arise code system operators have powers of compulsory acquisition. Although due to the time involved in compulsory acquisition operators will generally seek another site.

The pre-application consultation process has not been completed

● The application is not providing evidence or data from the public consultation.
● The pre-application consultation with the Council, with regards to the siting of masts
would not have been completed. The Planning justification statement notes that the
applicant has not received a reply from the Council before proceeding to a formal
application.

For all the reasons listed above, Leith Central Community Council objects to the application and, in accordance with the particulars listed below, the City of Edinburgh Council should refuse the application.

Stead’s Place online session – 21st September

We’re delighted to announce that we are hosting a presentation from Drum Property Group, regarding the Stead’s Place development, followed by a Q&A session on Monday 21st September, 7pm.

Local residents are encouraged to submit questions in advance, but are also welcome to ask questions directly at the session. Pre-submitted questions will be addressed first, followed by open questions.

This event is open to the public and all are welcome, though spaces are limited. To take part, please note;

  1. This is a pre-registered event. Please register using Eventbrite.
  2. The meeting will take place on Zoom, so please ensure you are able to use Zoom videoconfrencing software.
  3. You can familiarise yourself with the new plans linked on our Eventbrite page and below.

More information and registration: eventbrite.co.uk/e/lccc-steads-place-session-with-drum-property-group-tickets-120065937451

LCCC May 2020 minutes

Due to the limitations of online meetings, we are only recording those who were present at or sent apologies for such meetings.

This meeting was for members only, so any decision recorded below may not be binding. Similarly, the LCCC June meeting may not have been empowered to approve the minutes below.

Minutes of the ordinary meeting of Leith Central Community Council, held via Zoom on Monday 18 May 2020 at 7:00pm

Actions and decisions are red italic. nem con means that no-one spoke or voted against a decision. Continue reading

LCCC April 2020 minutes

Due to the limitations of online meetings, we are only recording those who were present at or sent apologies for such meetings.

This meeting was for members only, so any decision recorded below may not be binding. Similarly, the LCCC June meeting may not have been empowered to approve the minutes below. (These minutes were not published earlier because they were not considered at the May meeting due to an error in circulating the draft.)

Minutes of the ordinary meeting of Leith Central Community Council, held via Zoom on Monday 20 April 2020 at 7:00pm Continue reading

Proposed Bus, Cycle and Taxi gates, segregated cycle lanes and Footway widening on Forrest Road, The Mound, South Bridge and George IV Bridge (and North Bridge)

LCCC received the email below on 8 June 2020 along with drawings for Forrest Road, The Mound, George IV Bridge, South Bridge (a fifth drawing for North Bridge was obtained separately from NTBCC’s website), inviting us to respond within five business days to the proposals.

Given that five days are insufficient to allow for a considered response to complex proposals, even at the best of times, we wrote back (see below) stating that LCCC is not in a position to respond formally and substantially while much of public and democratic life is curtailed under emergency powers and LCCC is not able to hold public, properly constituted meetings.

LCCC regrets that the procedural shortcomings of a foreshortened consultation process may impinge on the quality of the proposed measures and undermine public trust and support.

Residents may wish to respond individually. If so, write to spacesforpeople@edinburgh.gov.uk by 5pm on Monday, 15 June 2020.

Click any thumbnail to see the full-size PDF in a new tab or window.


TDD-637129-04-North-Bridge

TDD-637129-1200-07 South Bridge

TDD-637129-1200-09 George IV Bridge

TDD-637129-1200-10 The Mound

TDD-637129-1200-11 Forrest Road

Continue reading

Our response to the Leith Walk/Halmyre Street consultation

The site between Leith Walk and Halmyre Street has had its consultation extended until 1st June 2020.

Before we submit the below views, we want to hear yours. Please fill in this 30-second form and let Leith Central Community Council know what you would like included in our response.

We urge all local residents and businesses to to take part in potentially shaping the future of the site either by filling in the above form or on edinburgh.gov.uk.

Place Brief for the site between Leith Walk & Halmyre Street

Leith Central Community Council consultation response

(15-02-20, P. Forissier / H. Tobermann)

Background

On 11 March 2019, LCCC called for formal planning guidance from CEC for the sites on both sides of lower Leith Walk (“Stead’s Place” and the site opposite, framed by Leith Walk at the old tram depot site to Manderston and Halmyre). On 25 March 2019, Neil Gardiner, CEC’s Planning Convener, responded: “There is considerable merit in your suggestion to prepare guidance in relation to the Stead’s Place site and also cover neighbouring development opportunities, for example land on the opposite side of Leith Walk. The preparation of a Place Brief would provide the opportunity for the local community to come together with landowners/ developers to discuss development options, aspirations and concerns across a number ofdevelopment sites.”

In early 2020, CEC started work on a Place Brief for the area between Leith Walk and Halmyre Street in the form public workshops and an online consultation.
Key elements and characteristics of the emerging Place Bief.

In view of the prominent location of both sites – east and west of Leith Walk, between Stead’s Place and Jane Street, and Manderson Street, Halmyre Street Smith Place respectively – Leith Central Community Council welcomes a Place Brief that guides future development in this area in a way that is sensitive to the surrounding urban fabric that is home and workplace of a strong community. Leith Central Community Council is conscious that the latter is vital to sustain the existing high density of the area. Given the size of both sites, insensitive or inappropriate “insertions” would undermine this strength and should therefore be ruled out by the Place Brief.

At the same time, the Place Brief is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to improve East-West and North-South permeability and to provide a step-change in health provision and much needed social and truly affordable housing.

The following elements should be part of the Place Brief

  1. Manderston Street and its railway arches should be part of the Brief, as well as former Tram Depot office building (165 Leith Walk) and the “Stead’s Place” shop frontage with the warehouses behind.
  2. The effects of any future development on the Conservation Area and all listed buildings surrounding the site should be acknowledged. In particular, the 2-storey “Stead’s Place” shop frontage needs to be a key element of any future development, as acknowledged by the DPEA appeal decision.
  3. The provision for truly affordable housing for rent and to buy, including social and council housing, should be made a priority to tackle homlessness and overcrowding.
  4. This part of Leith has an active local economy giving opportunities to access good quality work. A mixture of affordable residential, industrial, commercial and retail options is essential to protect a vibrant and lively Leith Walk as a place where people live and work.
  5. High quality pedestrian, and where possible, cycle routes through both sites – both north-south and east-west – should be designed in from the outset.
  6. Recognising the existing diversity of uses, there should be no single dominant use.
  7. Sensitive and diverse architectural styles should be at the heart of the future design.
  8. No overly massive design should be allowed; scale and density must be in tune with existingbuildings surrounding the sites.
  9. Considering the size of the site, the future developments should create an attractive series of places rather than one place.
  10. Design features should complement existing styles while contributing to the existing eclectic character of this part of Leith Walk.
  11. Outstanding precedents like the award winning Goldsmith Street in Norwich and Leith Fort should inspire the Place Brief.
  12. The inclusion of significant greenspace should be an essential part of the Place Brief.
  13. Developer’s contributions should be ring fenced for community agreed projects.
  14. Cultural and social spaces should be considered a priority for future community development.
  15. There is a range of spaces and opportunities to meet for the elderly and vulnerable people but many are at risk, like the Bingo Hall.
  16. Serious consideration needs to be given to the relocation of the outdated NHS facilities at Allander and Inchkeith House to a purpose-built health centre on the West side with “walk-in” access through one of the retained shop frontages. The existing – refurbished – buildings would lend themselves to retail or community use at ground level with residential accommodation above.

Please fill in this 30-second form and let Leith Central Community Council know your thoughts about our response.

Leith Walk/Halmyre Street consultation: extension to 1 June 2020

CEC emailed LCCC and many others on 7 May about an extension of the consultation-period on the draft place-brief for Leith Walk/Halmyre Street.

I may have written to you previously to tell you we were looking for views on the draft place brief for Leith Walk / Halmyre Street. The place brief sets out a vision and key  principles to inform the design of future development on the site.

Due to the Covid-19 lockdown the online consultation has been extended until 1 June 2020.  There is more time therefore  to give us your views on the draft brief if you haven’t already done so. Here is the link to the consultation: https://consultationhub.edinburgh.gov.uk/sfc/leith-walk-halmyre-street-site-brief.

There are links to the draft brief and some supporting documents including a summary of the previous consultations.

We hope to hear from you

Regards

Lesley Porteous / Planner / Spatial Policy / Place Directorate / The City of Edinburgh Council / Waverley Court, Level G3, 4 East Market Street, Edinburgh, EH8 8BG / Tel 0131 529 3203 / lesley.porteous@edinburgh.gov.uk / www.edinburgh.gov.uk

Edinburgh Council Planning Service Update: 24 April 2020

Following on from this information about the SG’s planning guidance on pre-applications, Edinburgh Council’s planning department has emailed community councils about how it is changing services in response to coronavirus.

Dear Community Councillors

We are writing to make you aware of a recent change to our service.

We are adapting our service so that we can support communities and businesses across Edinburgh through this difficult time. Our aim is to boost online public input to planning processes so that we can make and issue decisions which will both help with a swift recovery and a positive future for the city.  To do this we have introduced ways for people to stay informed and comment on planning proposals despite the coronavirus lockdown.

We are now:

  • Starting our publication of applications that we have received since the lockdown commenced in March.
  • Issuing neighbour notification letters by post, with the planning portal open for comments to be made on applications.

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