South Ayr housing plan approved despite concerns over school space and roads
A delayed housing development near the Ailsa Hospital in Ayr has been given outline approval despite councillors’ concerns about school spaces and access roads.
Developers Wilson Hampshire Ltd submitted an application for planning permission in principle for the project, which includes around 250 homes, local shops, hospitality, offices, care home and creche.
Managed in partnership with Ayrshire Housing, an estimated 25 % of the houses would be affordable homes. The plans are part of a wider Ayr South plan that had aimed to have hundreds of homes already in place.
Councillors initially raised concerns about the lack of capacity at nearby schools. Councillors were also sceptical about the assurances that the access road that would be shared by the estate and Ailsa Hospital would be managed. However, councillors eventually approved the proposal to delegate the powers to planning officials to work on a detailed plan for the housing, the Daily Record reports.
Tim Ferguson, representing the developers, described the plan as a “golden opportunity to deliver affordable family homes to Ayr”.
He said: “This application has been approved and required to be delivered since 2014. Not a single home has been delivered. It is understood that around 750 new homes should have been delivered by about now.
“This application is six years overdue. Now is the time that we all start working together and look at better, quicker and more deliverable ways of getting this allocation underway.
“This proposal represents a real opportunity to deliver new family and affordable homes, with major house builders ready to start with immediate effect.”
Mr Ferguson also highlighted the social and financial benefits of the development, revealing that 77 new jobs would be created, £337,000 in council tax would be collected and a capital investment of almost £40 million.
Gavin Cockburn of South Ayrshire Council place service added: “The immediate challenge is that the council has no single non-denominational primary school neighbouring the site with sufficient capacity.”
He explained that Alloway Primary was currently at 94% capacity while the next, at Kincaidston, was at 82%. He added: “Catchment is by address and rezoning is extremely rare due to disruption of families.”