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Craiglockhart Community Council

116 Colinton Road (former Alfa Romeo Car Showroom) - 19/01107/FUL (previously 16/04062/FUL)

01/07/2020- we have been advised today that construction work should start this week, on the site of the old Alpha Romeo Garage, Sitting Room pub and Premier Store. It has been a long slog but the developers are finally in a position to instruct the Contractor to start on site. The same contractor will work on both developments at the same time, that does make a lot of sense logistically. So, over 4 years after we received the first notice on the Alpha Romeo site, that caused unhappiness in the community amongst our residents, we should now have a better, more appropriate and less obtrusive development completed by next summer.

30/03/2020 - The Alfa Romeo developers have been trying to get the Affordable Housing contribution approved since September 2019, however CEC have had changes in staff (leaving last year). Councillor Gavin Corbett intervened on our behalf and was advised on 17th March 2020 by CEC Senior Planner that, “If the developer accepts the terms of the Council’s Legal Agreement then matters can be concluded (ie agreement reached, signed by all parties and monies paid) within 3-4 weeks

17/01/2020  - The last 12 weeks were spent agreeing the Affordable Housing contribution with the District Valuer at CEC. Developer said “we are now engaged.”

11/09/2019 -
Alfa Romeo plans approved unanimously by CEC Planning Committee

20/05/2019 - we have today received amended plans from the developer  for our consideration - click here to view  

19/03/2019 - We have been notified today that the Planning Application for the revised design of the 19 units etc on the site of the former Alfa Romeo Garage at 116 Colinton Road, that was presented by the development team on 18th February 2019 at Craiglockhart Church, is now logged and comments by the public are to be submitted by Friday 18th April 2019Link to drawings etc relating to this application

28/01/2019 - Drawings received from developer which they have passed to us for comment. These are alternative ideas to what was previously proposed. Consists of 2 ground floor retail units (coloured mauve on drawing) and and a reduced number of flats.   

09/10/2018 - The Reporter has dismissed the appeal by the developer - further info

10/06/2018 - The Court of Session appears to have supported the appeal against DPEA's previous Appeal decision made on 3rd January 2018. Whilst no official notification was yet received, DPEA appointed of a new Reporter, Allison Coard MA, MPhil, MRTPI, by issuance of their letter 8th June 2018.

05/03/18 - It appears that the Citation for Appeal will not be contested by either the DPEA or CEC in which case the current Appeal Decision will be set aside and the Appeal process will likely recommence with a new Reporter appointed. This latter opinion is based on email sent by DPEA (dated 9 February 2018) and CEC Planning Appeals (dated 28 February 2018).

19/02/18 - Legal papers issuing a Form of Citation in Appeal to the Court of Session appealing against the Appeal Decision by the Reporter on 3rd January 2018.  It contains 11 pages of legal argument, a list of the 60 local residents similarly notified and the 70-80 pages contained in the Reporters Decision and CEC Development Management Subcommittee documentation 2 August 2017.

03/01/18 - the appeal from the developer to construct 37 units has been rejected so the community's efforts to stop the development from proceeding in its proposed form have been successful. The only right of appeal is stated to be on a point of law at the Court of Session. What happens next with this (vacant) property remains to be seen. 

14/09/17 - The Applicant intends submitting an Appeal iro this Planning Application which was refused on 02/08/17 (see below). This is very disappointing as we have had our day in court; won and now are pretty powerless as we have little or no involvement and are in the hands of the DPEA (Directorate for Planning and Environment Agency). They control the process and can call for a site inspection (and on occasion a Hearing), that we can attend.The decision lies with the DPEA rather than CEC. However, the Reporter from the DPEA will have access to all the objections from the original application and reviews the Planning Application based on the evidence presented. We are still conferring within our committee as to whether there are any other options or actions that can assist our case.

02/08/17 - The City of Edinburgh Council Development Sub-committee met today in a Hearing that took around two hours. This resulted in the Planning Application being rejected by 6 votes to 4. With the 37 flats being stopped we have the problem of one empty site and where do we go from here. There may be an appeal or even a resubmission with amendments (minor or otherwise) or ..........? This is not in our hands and not good news to the local traders at Happy Valley, so its a bit of a mixed blessing to local residents / owners - an empty plot of land is in nobody's interests. This matter can be regarded as a small win but where we go from here, remains to be seen.
A video recording of the Hearing is available here. It is interesting but quite long so select "Watch"  for section 6.2 - 116 Colinton Rd. The City Council Planner speaks first, our Objection is around 33 minutes into the recording then after about 120 minutes until around 154 minutes the Councillors make their comments and direct the arguments. The decision and vote is near the end.?

14/06/17 - At today's Development Sub-committee meeting the Planning Application was discussed and proposed by CEC Planning dept to recommend. After a lengthy discussion, it was agreed that the matter would be put to a Hearing (latest information is that the Hearing is expected to be on 02/08 so the matter could be resolved quite soon). 
The community's wishes and representations from Councillor Corbett and from ourselves were major contributory factors. There was also discussion about community objections and the lack of affordable housing in the development that inevitably contributed to the need for a Hearing.
Paul Mowat and John Corbett (both from CCC) attended as visitors in the viewing gallery.

31/05/17 - A site inspection of the Alfa Romeo garage for 37 flats will take place on 5 June at 9:45am.

19/04/17 - Following the requests by Clr Corbett for a Hearing and by Clr Burns for a Site Visit, there was no discussion today at the CEC Development Management Sub Committee on the merits of the Planning Application or the Recommendation. It was decided to continue this Planning Application and that it would be decided by the New Authority at a future date. (We take this to mean after the local elections in May)

- Development Management Sub-Committee recommended the approval of this application. Councillor Gavin Corbett has requested a hearing, which should be heard on 19th April iro of the following points : 
1.The scale of objections (69 in a very specific local site) suggest a degree of neighbour disquiet and public interest in the development which would be best-served by having the decision made by way of a hearing.
2.The scale, height and density of the development is out of keeping with the immediate context which is predominantly single or two storey dwellings.
3.The impact on the neighbouring properties and the amenity of the residents has not been fully taken into account in relation to light, overshadowing and privacy.   
4.The traffic impacts have been insufficiently weighed up, with something like a 40% increase in traffic volumes on the access road.

The meeting on 19th April is at the City Chambers. There is a public gallery should anyone wish to attend. 

Oct 2016 - Public Meeting on 17/10 to discuss new application. Almost everyone against proposal as it stands. We have submitted an objection to CEC reflecting views expressed  

Sept 2016 - new application received to build 38 flats - four more than previous application. Comments required by 21/10/16 

Aug 2016 - application withdrawn - it is likely that another may be submitted at a future date 

Mar 2016 - 58 residents submitted their views about this via the Planning Portal - a good response.

Feb 2016 - application submitted and comments required by 14/03/2016.