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Fear of explosives if housing goes ahead

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By Marc McLean, local democracy reporter
Dumfries and West
Fear of explosives if housing goes ahead

A GROUP of residents are worried about explosives being found at a former fuel and oil depot in Dumfries if housing development plans are approved.

And the 24 householders are fighting against proposals by Building Craftsmen Ltd to construct 29 new homes at the site, which is near to Maxwelltown Station Road and south of Terregles Road.

They argue that there is a major public safety issue, claiming that the land is also contaminated from its previous use as an oil depot.

The Dumfries-based developer has submitted a planning application to build a mix of two and three bedroom houses on the 1.76 hectare site.

The council’s planning case officer has supported the house building plans, however 24 formal objections have been lodged from nearby householders, eight of which are from residents in the Maxwelltown Station Road area.

The application is due to be considered by the planning committee next Wednesday. A report, which has been prepared for the meeting, highlights numerous concerns from objectors.

These include a negative impact on privacy and residential amenity, too many homes in the development proposals for the size of the site, and health and safety concerns over contamination of the land from its previous use as a depot.

The report also states: “Explosives have been found on the site in the past and there are concerns that they may be found again.”

Objectors have also complained that the proposed houses are not in keeping with the surrounding area, traffic issues, lack of parking provision, and the work potentially affecting neighbouring mature trees.

The council’s roads officer stated that the developer would have to create a construction traffic management plan but had no objections otherwise, while the flood risk management department, and Scottish Water had no issues with the housing proposals either.

The council report states: “The proposed development comprises the erection of 29 dwellinghouses, arranged in the main toward the edges of the site.

“A new primary spine road for the development is proposed which continues to the southern end of the site, with a looped arrangement centrally, along with the provision of open space and soft landscaping works.

“Access to the site is taken from the existing junction on the C14n Terregles road.

“The proposed housing units are a mix of two and three bedroom single and two-storey detached and semi-detached dwellings. The buildings will be finished in a mix of smooth and multi facing brick, the roofs will be finished with grey concrete tiles, fascias and rainwater goods are assumed black uPVC. Doors and windows are also uPVC.”

Councillors will consider all arguments at next week’s planning committee before making the final decision.

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