PROPOSALS to demolish a former school in Dumfries and construct a small housing development moved a step closer last week.
Councillors approved planning permission in principle for four houses being built on the site of the Langlands special school building in Loreburn Park.
Dumfries and Galloway Council put forward proposals to its own planning department, which will likely result in the site going on the market at a later date and a housing developer bringing forward more detailed plans.
However, this is not a straightforward matter because the road leading into the Langlands school plot, off Lover’s Walk, is privately owned.
Home owners in Loreburn Park, at the access to the site, have also raised concerns about the volume of traffic and road safety due to blind corners.
At the council’s planning committee last week, residents called for an alternative access route being considered.
Objector Joan Colman attended the meeting to represent residents of Loreburn Park. She said: “We seek a postponement of this agenda item to allow a negotiated settlement to be achieved over matters of servitude, amenity, safety, traffic, drainage, ongoing maintenance, and other inadequacies of Loreburn Park as a means of access.”
Mrs Colman then read from a council document which stated that the road was not suitable for large vehicles, and also confirmed there were drainage issues on the site.
She added: “We hold no objection and welcome the proposed housing plots. Indeed, in previous written submissions we have recommended an alternative vehicular access be created from Edinburgh Road via the Gracefield car park, with a new short 100m link to the site.”
Chief planning officer David Suttie said: “If the committee are minded to grant planning permission, and it’s only planning permission in principle, there will need to be a further application for the details.
“To be able to implement that, the developer would need to secure all the necessary servitude access rights and any other legal rights they to be able to actually secure the permission.”
Annandale East and Eskdale Councillor Archie Dryburgh said: “I would suggest that we go with the recommendation, but that any full application comes back to this committee.”
Councillors agreed to grant planning permission in principle.
Langlands school closed several years ago and is now part of the North West Community Campus, which also replaced Lochside and St Ninian’s primary schools, as well as Maxwelltown High School.