Aberdeen councillors back plans for 3,000 new homes at Countesswells
A new community of 3,000 homes will be built in the west of Aberdeen after councillors approved the £700 million plans.
The major development at Countesswells, tabled by a consortium headed by developers Heron Property, Stewart Milne Homes and Ian Suttie, will also see the creation of two new primaries schools, a secondary school, business units and a health centre.
Councillors granted planning permission in principle for the scheme which has also won the backing of the UK Government.
The Treasury has guaranteed an £80m loan as part of nationwide scheme to boost private investment in infrastructure.
The 410-acre farmland site lies between Bieldside to the south and Kingswells to the north.
It is bounded to the east by Hazlehead woods, park and golf courses, and to the west by Foggieton and Countesswells Wood.
Concerns had been raised by community councils in the area about the impact of the development on the already-stretched road network.
At the planning meeting, deputy council leader Marie Boulton failed in a bid to have the plans thrown out.
Ms Boulton said: “I think people weren’t listening, they had made their minds up.
“This wasn’t about removing the Countesswells site from the development plan, this was about prioritising it, ensuring the infrastructure was in place.
“We’ve already got gridlock around there.”
But the planning convenor, Labour’s Ramsey Milne, insisted that providing new housing was essential.
He said: “This is not something that has come out of the blue, it is a long-term planning proposal - it is really necessary that we provide 3,000 homes over the next 15 years for the development of the city.”
After a debate of about two hours, approval was granted by 31 to 9.
Speaking afterwards, Glenn Allison, chief executive officer of the Stewart Milne Group, said: “This is an important step towards the creation of a new community of strategic significance for Aberdeen and the north-east of Scotland and we look forward to continuing working with the council to obtain the consents required to deliver Countesswells.
“Our collective vision is to provide an attractive and vibrant community in which to live and work, which will contribute to the long-term economic and social sustainability and success of Aberdeen and its surroundings.”