A blueprint for the future of Aberdeen has been approved by Aberdeen City Council.
The approval of the Proposed Aberdeen Local Development Plan (as Modified 2012) brings to a conclusion a major project to deliver the plan for the city and marks a significant change in the strategy for growth for Aberdeen.
The Plan, which councillors voted 34 to two to adopt, aims to make the city an even more attractive, prosperous and sustainable place in which to live, visit and do business.
The adopted Aberdeen Local Development Plan, which is due to come into effect on 29 February, provides a firm foundation for investment in the city and will inform decisions on all planning applications.
It contains a spatial strategy which explains the Council’s overall view of where development should go and the principles behind that. It identifies future development sites and the scale of development expected on each.
The Proposed Aberdeen Local Development Plan identifies land to meet the housing and employment land allocations laid out in the most recent Aberdeen City and Shire Structure Plan . It also contains policies which meet the aims and objectives of the Structure Plan.
Aberdeen will accommodate at least half of the new housing and employment land required to meet the strategic needs of the North-east over the next 20 years. This means that greenfield sites for 21,000 new homes and 175 hectares of employment land are required up to 2030.
The Plan proposes sites for a further 10,000 homes on brownfield sites and 5,000 in regeneration areas – and sets out new ways of developing areas, guided by detailed masterplans prepared in consultation with local communities.
The Plan is laid out in several sections, each of which identifies the development opportunities available in the city.
Housing – The Plan identified areas which are suitable for new housing up to 2030:
- Bridge of Don/Grandhome – 7,610 properties;
- Dyce/Bucksburn – 4,940;
- Kingswells and Greenferns – 2,270;
- Countesswells – 3,000;
- Deeside – 700;
- Loirston and Cove – 1,500;
- Woodside – 300.
It also lays out a number of policies, including a requirement for developers to contribute no fewer than 25% of properties in developments as affordable housing. These were all backed by Reporters except the removal of areas of housing at Malcolm Road, Peterculter, Mid Anguston and land adjacent to Bucksburn Primary School and an area of employment known as Blackhills of Cairnrobin. The examination report recommended that no additional or alternative sites should be included.
Employment Land – The Plan details the areas earmarked for employment land:
- Bridge of Don/Grandhome – 32 hectares;
- Dyce/Bucksburn – 54.5 hectares;
- Kingswells and Greenferns – 60 hectares;
- Countesswells (including one hectare at East Arnhall) – 11 hectares;
- Deeside – 5 hectares;
- Loirston and Cove – 33.5 hectares.
The Reporters backed all the proposed employment land except for the removal of a 3.5 hectare site at Blackhills of Cairnrobin.
Transport – A range of schemes have been identified to address existing transport issues in the city and ensure goodconnections are provided. The Plan has safeguarded land for:
- improved rail services;
- the A96 Park and Ride/Choose and Dyce Drive link road;
- Berryden corridor;
- South College Street improvements;
- Haudagain roundabout improvements;
- the Third Don crossing.
All the Plan’s proposed transport schemes were backed by the Reporters.
Waste – A number of new waste infrastructure facilities will be needed to reduce the amount of rubbish being sent to landfill. These include a materials recycling facility, a composting facility and a new waste transfer station. The following sites have been safeguarded in the Plan and backed by Reporters for waste-related used:
- Altens East/Doonies – materials recycling facility, composting facility and/or a transfer station;
- Sclattie Quarry, Bucksburn – transfer station;
- Denmore Road, Bridge of Don – recycling centre;
- Grove Nursery at Hazlehead Park – recycling centre.
Education – The Plan identifies the need for the provision of schools across the city, broken down by Masterplan Zones, which were all backed by Reporters.
Councillor Kate Dean, convener of Enterprise, Planning and Infrastructure said: “This is the culmination of three years’ hard work which began in 2008 and which involved a huge amount of consultation. All of the feedback from that consultation has been taken into consideration.
“Most of the Plan remains substantially as approved by the Council. The result of agreeing to adopt the Plan is a first for Aberdeen – a Local Development Plan delivered not just on time, but two months earlier than timetabled and that means it’s the first in Scotland to be adopted under the new planning legislation.
“We will have the most up-to-date development framework in Scotland and probably the most ambitious, which will influence high level investment decisions in coming years and will require an ongoing commitment to ensure that what it lays out becomes a reality.
“The requirement for 25% affordable housing will be a major boost for those people who would absolutely love to live in this city.”
Vice-convener Councillor John Corall added: “We’ve reached the crucial final stage in the creation of the local development plan, which will provide a framework for the future of the city and secure its status as a major contributor to the regional and national economy.
“Adoption of this Plan will give confidence to potential investors that Aberdeen is a city which can support new homes and business and provide a safe and sustainable environment in which to live. It also identifies infrastructure likely to be required to support new communities.
“Our commitment to Aberdeen is clear from the Plan. Today sees a very important step forward for Aberdeen.”
The Council received the Report into the Examination of the Proposed Aberdeen Local Development Plan from the Scottish Government Reporters on 21 December 2011. The report recommended a number of modifications to the Proposed Plan which had been approved by Full Council in August 2010.
A copy of that report is available on the city council’s website at www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/localdevelopmentplan
The Council has now made all modifications to the Proposed Aberdeen Local Development Plan resulting from the Examination. In order to formally adopt the Plan a further period of consultation must be carried out and the Plan as modified must be sent to Scottish Ministers.The Plan can be adopted 28 days after this, unless the Scottish Ministers dictate otherwise.
The adoption of the Aberdeen Local Development Plan will not be the end of the process. There is a requirement to produce an action programme within three months of the Plan being adopted. This document will be aimed specifically at the delivery of the proposals and policies contained in the Aberdeen Local Development Plan.
The action programme will include timescales for the delivery of key infrastructure and will be reviewed regularly taking into account changing circumstances.
The Plan and Modifications can be viewed at all public libraries in Aberdeen and at
Marischal College, Broad Street, Aberdeen from 8.30am to 5pm, Monday to Friday or viewed and downloaded from the Council’s website at: www.aberdeencity.gov.uk/localdevelopmentplan