The Courier & Advertiser (Angus and Dundee)
Controversial Kinross housing plans win councillors’ approval
Proposals: New homes to be built in grounds of town’s former high school
A contentious plan to build new housing in the grounds of a former secondary school has been approved by councillors.
Persimmon Homes won consent for 91 properties at the old Kinross High, despite objections from locals.
The Edwardian-school will be retained and transformed into four homes as part of the project, while other buildings on the seven-acre site will be demolished.
Two years ago, Persimmon was told to go back to the drawing board after it put forward plans to clear the site and create 102 homes.
The latest bid was opposed by the town’s civic trust who said the proposal was “significantly greater” than the council’s adopted development plan which had earmarked the site for just 70 houses.
The group also complained that the density of housing was “inappropriately high for the area”.
However, the plan was welcomed by members of the council’s development management committee on Wednesday.
Convener Tom Gray said: “Personally, I was very annoyed that the first plan was rejected two years ago.
“This will bring new housing to where it needs to be, right in the centre of Kinross. I am all for this proposal.”
Independent Kinross-shire councillor David Cuthbert tabled a motion to defer making a decision until a detailed parking survey could be carried out. His motion was defeated in a 10-2 vote.
Ian McGoldrick, a director at Perth-based Persimmon Homes, said the housing plan was first mooted after the council had unsuccessfully tried to market the site to a supermarket chain in 2009.
“I think by reducing the number of houses involved, it shows that we are prepared to listen to the public and the planning officers,” he said.
“We have also moved homes away from the boundary and created more space for car parking.”
He added: “It will breathe new life into a redundant brownfield site which would otherwise become an increasing target for vandals.”
The Kinross-shire Civic Trust had concerns about the impact on the old school.
In the group’s formal objection, a spokesman said: “The 1906 building designed by Andrew Muirhead will not be preserved or enhanced by what is proposed.”
“This will bring new housing to where it needs to be, right in the centre of Kinross. COUNCILLOR TOM GRAY