Proposed LDP kick starts ‘ambitious’ East Lothian affordable housing plans

east lothian councilEast Lothian Council has approved a plan which sets out how it will deliver over 10,000 new homes over the next 10 years.

The finalised Proposed Local Development Plan (LDP), which was given the green light by councillors this week, sets out the council’s planning strategy, sites and policies to guide and manage future development within the county.

The Proposed LDP indicates where new developments such as housing, business and other uses are likely to be supported and where certain types of development would not be supported. It provides the essential framework against which planning applications will be assessed.

In November 2015, councillors considered the draft Proposed LDP and approved it subject to the following amendments including plans to release sites to allow for the construction of hundreds of affordable homes.

Amendments included:

  • the removal of the proposal for 1,000 homes at the Goshen Farm site, and the corresponding secondary education proposal on this site;
  • the allocation of Dolphingstone as an allocated site for 600 houses;
  • the allocation of Howemire, Wallyford for 100 homes;
  • the allocation of land at Craighall for mixed use development;
  • the allocation of Dolphingstone North, Prestonpans for up to 160 homes;
  • the removal of safeguarded land at Longniddry South; and
  • the consideration of various sites in the North Berwick area for allocations for employment use
  • Councillors approved the Proposed Plan incorporating these amendments this week and also approved for consultation, a new draft framework for developer contributions; a draft affordable housing quota and tenure mix and draft development briefs for proposed allocations.

    Council leader Willie Innes said: “I’m pleased that we have approved the Proposed LDP. The fact is that under the approved Strategic Plan as approved by Scottish Ministers, East Lothian must be able to accommodate 10,000 new homes over the next decade and I believe the plan sets out the most sustainable development strategy for East Lothian to deliver its obligation. In so doing, the plan provides a real opportunity to secure land for affordable housing provision at scale in areas where demand for affordable homes significantly outstrips current supply. In that context, I welcome our draft affordable housing quota and tenure mix consultation exercise and specifically the seminar that will be organised to allow constructive and meaningful input from housing professionals, partners including government, and in particular our tenants and residents groups.

    “We have allocated a further 103 ha of employment land that provides for significant employment opportunities within our communities. Without diminishing the importance of any employment allocation we have particular strategic sites at Craighall and Cockenzie that council officers will continue to work with others to unlock and see delivered.

    “None of this is easy of course and it is important that we continue to have ongoing debate on these issues. Approving the Proposed LDP is though an important milestone. The plan will be hugely significant in terms of shaping the future of our county and maintaining it as one of the best places in Scotland in which to live, work and do business.”

    The Proposed LDP complies with the Strategic Development Plan (SDP1) for Edinburgh and South East Scotland, which is prepared by SESplan, and approved by Scottish Ministers. It also links to the Council Plan, the Single Outcome Agreement and the council’s Economic Development Strategy.

    It will now be published for representations from interested parties from September 19 to October 31.

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