Planning applications and processes
As one of the decentralisation measures announced by the Government during the passage of the Local Government etc (Scotland) Act 1994, community councils will have a statutory right to be consulted on applications for planning permission from April 1996.
Some documents of interest can be downloaded using the links below. More comprehensive details on all planning applications can be viewed using the City of Edinburgh Council’s Planning Portal here.
Guidelines on which aspects you can comment are on the planning portal link.
Housing Developments – Some Key Facts
To clarify some misconceptions, here are some facts and explanations about housing developments:
- Who drives the housing developments
House building targets are issued to each council by the Scottish Government who are, in turn, driven by an increasing population with a need for homes. Developers are not the drivers of housing but are delivering what they are asked to.
- Who decides where the houses go and how many
The Council decides where the housing should be built within their area. The last Local Development Plan (LDP) for City of Edinburgh Council was approved in Nov 2016. A number of areas in Queensferry were included in this LDP – Dalmeny Park, South Scotstoun, Builyeon Rd and Springfield (see map) QDCC objected to the LDP sites back in 2015 and escalated the objections to Scot Gov. However, the sites were approved. The LDP can be viewed here: http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/…/edinburgh_local_development_p…
- Who says yes or no
Housing development planning applications are presented to the CEC Development Management sub-committee (which is webcast live), consisting of elected councillors, who assess the application’s compliance to the planning policy framework and either grant or refuse. Objections therefore need to illustrate a breach of planning policy or precedent.
Webcasts can be viewed here: https://edinburgh.public-i.tv/core/portal/home
- How the infrastructure is upgraded to support the additional housing
Every major housing development is required to contribute money to support local infrastructure – e.g. affordable housing, roads, education, paths, public transport, active travel, speed controls, crossings, lighting & more recently health. This is known as the planning gain or s75 agreement, a public document published with the planning documents. e.g, the current s75 for South Scotstoun is around £7m.
Planning applications and all associated documents can be viewed and commented on the planning portal here: View and comment on planning applications
- Health Centres
Health Centres are funded by NHS on a per capita basis of registrations. The more people who come to the area and register, the more funding the Medical Centre gets. Recently the planning policy has changed to also include some s75 funds to go towards Medical Centres. Queensferry Medical Centre has expanded over recent years. An application for a third Pharmacy is currently under appeal to NHS.
None of Queensferry or Dalmeny’s schools are full. The roll projections, which include housing increases, are a public document and can be viewed on the Council website. The catchment for QHS will be redrawn once a new NW Edinburgh school is built which will extend capacity well in to the future. A new Primary School is proposed in the Builyeon Rd site and other local schools have expansions. School roll projections can be viewed here
- Shops and employment
A commercial area is proposed within the Builyeon Rd site, it will be open to shops and businesses to apply if interested. The Dalmeny Park site planning application has been granted and is awaiting developers to build. Ferrymuir was marketed for many years for business use then retail but with no interest lodged.
- Traffic & Travel
The relevant authorities (CEC & Transport Scotland) are well aware of the traffic, parking and connectivity issues in and around the town. Solutions are being sought and QDCC continues to press these issues.
- Local engagement – what difference it makes
The chances of stopping a housing development within the LDP framework are negligible, they have already been agreed by councillors. However, the shape of the plan, the roads, paths, play parks, type and style of housing, landscaping, etc can all be negotiated. Please ensure you take the time to comment on the planning portal for any application and be aware of what constitutes an objection that will be considered by reading the guidelines.
- Affordable Housing : What does that mean?
Current housing policy stipulates that 25% of homes on large new development sites should consist of “affordable housing”.
This consists of Social Rent, Mid-Market Rent and some share schemes. The full definition and types of affordable housing are explained in the document here: (key excerpt page in the attached image)
QDCC will continue to negotiate and make representations to ensure the best possible outcome for the area from each of the developments. All residents are welcome to attend the monthly meetings and contribute constructively with ideas on how you would like to shape these developments. The current local developments can be viewed on this page below.
- Commenting on Planning Applications
If you wish to comment on any planning application, it is important that you understand the criteria that will be considered and what will be ‘scored through’ as irrelevant to the planning framework. A brief summary:
✅ What you can comment on:
Comments which are relevant to planning issues, such as:
• traffic and parking
• appearance of the area
• impact on a conservation area
• setting or character of a listed building
• loss of significant landscape features
• noise and disturbance
• effect of cooking odours
• loss of sunlight or daylight
These are known as material considerations.
⛔️ Planning officials and councillors cannot consider comments on non relevant planning issues, such as:
• loss of private view
• effect of the development on property values
• building regulation matters
• racist remarks.
The full details are available to read here:
Current major planning applications
Forth Bridge Experience – Reception Hub
Status: Permission granted 4th March 2020 with conditions on the tree maintenance and car park capacity reduction. Recorded webcast of presentations and decision can be viewed here.
Details: Development of a Forth Bridge Walk Reception Centre; new sections of bridge access system; new viewing platforms; associated car parking; landscaping; servicing and alterations to existing vehicular and pedestrian accesses.
Ferrymuir (Corus site) 125 dwellings
Reference : 18/08266/AMC
Status: Site now acquired by Ambassador Homes. Amended plan submitted to council Wed 11th March 2020. Commenting has been re-opened until 20th May 2020.
Details: Residential development application. Revised Design & Access Statement April 2020
History: Application for amendment submitted 31st Aug 2018. 18/05713/FUL
Detailed application for 125 dwellings 18/08266/AMC submitted 3rd Oct 2018 then re-submitted 2019(Closing date for comment 25th Nov 2019).
Builyeon Road Housing Development
Status: PPP (principle) application minded to grant 21st Feb 2018 with conditions set. Awaiting full detailed application and settlement of the s75 legal agreement which CALA are in the process of.
Details: Planning ref – Approved (principle). Detailed plan, transport assessment, placemaking exercise and public consulation required prior to the full application.
South Scotstoun Housing
Status: Construction has commenced. Application granted 21st March 2018. Item 7.1 on the webcast viewable here.
Details: The latest planning application 16/06280/FUL was granted on 21st March 2018.
Queensferry Primary School class extensions
Status: – Application granted 8th Feb 2018 – work completed autumn 2019.
Details: Drop in information session Wed 11th Oct 2017 in the QP school hall 6:00pm-7:30pm. Open to all public.
Queensferry High School build
Status: Application granted 29th Jan 2018. Works started 30th April 2018. Expected completion March 2020.
Details: Plans submitted include the requested independent community access, 6 lane swimming pool, steam room, sauna and many other leisure facilities. Capacity for 1200 pupils.
Ferrymuir Retirement Homes
Status: granted 21 May 2018 – work commenced. Completion expected March 2020.
Details: 44 retirement homes(flats) between Dakota Hotel and Frankie & Benny’s restaurant. Details and application process from Link Group here.
Commercial unit in Dalmeny Park
Status: Application granted 22nd March 2019. Awaiting developers action.
Details: Design & Access Statement
Reference: 19/06079/PAN Proposal of Application Notice submitted 18th Dec 2019..
Status: Land adjacent to Queensferry Crossing authorised under LDP for housing. Developers in talks over re-purchase of Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) land from Transport Scotland.
The Proposal of Application Notice (PAN) for the Springfield land is being submitted. A public exhibition of the proposals was held on Friday 24th Jan 2020 from 2pm – 8pm and Saturday 25th January 10am – 1pm both in Echline Primary School .
The land has already been approved for housing under LDP in 2016 as previously discussed here, however this is an opportunity to discuss the shape, content and supporting infrastructure of the proposals directly with CALA, the developers, prior to a full detailed application being submitted. QDCC will also be in attendance.
West Dalmeny Housing Development
Status: Granted 11 Oct 2017 – Work completed 2019.
Details: 15 homes by Westpoint
- Craigiehall Village proposed development
Status: application withdrawn
The Master plan is indicative but the development is envisaged to consist of:
• 1,200 residential units
• 100 bed Hotel
• 120 bed Care Home
• 7,000 sqm Neighbourhood Centre
• 4,000 sqm Community facilities (Doctors/Dentist, etc)
• Primary School
• Park & Ride facility
- Ferrymuir Bellway Housing
Status: Building complete. Community Facility funding held in trust by QDCC pending a project by QCCC for a 10 bed Respite and Day Care Centre; additional £1.1m funding currently being raised.
Details: Proposed development of 143 houses and flats (including 25% affordable homes) and community facility. | Site 80 Metres West Of 4 Ferrymuir South Queensferry
- Dalmeny Park Housing
Status: site completed summer 2019.