Greens slam Local Development Plan sham

Green councillors have slammed Edinburgh’s Local Development Plan, saying that it fails the city on affordable housing, traffic problems and loss of Greenbelt land.

Today’s Planning Committee of the City Council debated the plan, which sets out the detail of potential land uses for the entire city and therefore is a benchmark for future planning applications.

The plan has been modified by the Scottish Government, with councillors asked to endorse those modifications today.

However, the sole Green member of the Planning Committee, Nigel Bagshaw, tabled an addendum pointing out that the plan fell far short of what was needed on affordable housing, while also giving the nod to further loss of greenbelt land and increased traffic.

Cllr Bagshaw said:

“The local development plan is a sham.  It is a sham because it is out of step with what Edinburgh needs. And it is a sham because it leaves many community groups, battling hard for their area, feeling voiceless.

“I strongly resent being told by Scottish Government officials that we have no choice but to accept what many, including the Green group, find deeply unpalatable.

“What the city needs, what the local development plan should deliver, is a shared vision of Edinburgh’s future, not one imposed from above.”

The Green addendum is below

In the recommendations, insert after point 1.1.2:

 ‘The Planning Committee:

Recognises that Edinburgh needs a large amount of genuinely affordable housing to meet the needs of its existing and future population, but that the Local Development Plan (LDP) in its current form falls significantly short of meeting that need;

Recognises the negative impacts from implementation of the Local Development Plan, specifically in relation to unnecessary and irreversible loss of greenbelt land and further urban sprawl with the associated health, air pollution and emissions problems caused by increased traffic levels;

Recognises that, despite the significance of the LDP to the city, community groups feel that their views are not taken into account.

And therefore: will make every effort to ensure that these shortcomings are addressed fully in the preparation of the Second Local Development Plan