Ministers to have final say on Aberdeen affordable housing development

An application for more than 200 affordable homes for rent on the site of a former school in Aberdeen has been referred to Holyrood amid a planning dispute over the loss of sporting facilities as a result of the development.

Aberdeen City Council’s planning committee gave the green light for 212 properties to be built at the former Kincorth Academy, off Cairngorm Drive.

However, an official objection was lodged by sportscotland regarding the loss of floodlit netball and tennis courts as well as a 60m by 40m synthetic pitch and grass playing field.

The national sports agency cited planning policy designed to safeguard outdoor sporting venues.

Council planners argued the creation of new sports facilities at the replacement Lochside Academy would make up for the loss of the tennis courts which they said are in “poor condition”.

Although councillors agreed with that verdict, ministers will now be given the chance to make a verdict.

Led by Atkins and Rankin Fraser, the development will comprise a mix of unit types with shared residential streets, parking and external amenities.

Atkins said its proposal follows four key design principles – enhanced daylight, robust design, safety and place – that underpin the council’s ambition for all new housing.

Kincorth Academy closed in summer 2018 after a new multi-million-pound school was built at Lochside, bringing together pupils from Kincorth and Torry.

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