NTBCC minutes Monday 9 August 2021

Minutes of New Town & Broughton Community Council’s ordinary meeting, held via Zoom, on Monday 9 August 2021 at 7pm

Actions and decisions are red italic. ND (‘no dissent’) means that no-one spoke or voted against a decision.

Edinburgh Council has stated that ‘CCs can approve minutes, and take other decisions, remotely’, as so long as they ensure that ‘remote meetings are as accessible to members of the public and (as) well-advertised as possible’.

1 Technology check

This was done at the start of the AGM.

2 Welcome/Admin/Apologies/Well-being

2.a Attendance

Mike Birch NTBCC, RRCTMA Richard Price NTBCC
David Clarke NTBCC Nick Reid NTBCC
Annick Gaillard NTBCC David Renton NTBCC
Laura Graham NTBCC Alan Welsh NTBCC
Stephen Hajducki NTBCC Bruce Ryan Minutes secretary
Deirdre Henderson NTBCC Alan McIntosh Broughton Spurtle
Simon Holledge NTBCC/EACC Cllr Gavin Barrie Inverleith ward
Carol Nimmo NTBCC Cllr Karen Doran City Centre ward
Jack Hugh NTBCC Cllr Max Mitchell Inverleith ward
Ken Lochrie NTBCC Cllr Rob Munn Leith Walk ward
Susan Macinnes NTBCC ~14 residents/visitors

2.b Apologies for absence

Susan Duff NTBCC Cllr Hal Osler Inverleith Ward
Peter Williamson NTBCC, Picardy Residents Cllr Alasdair Rankin City Centre ward
Cllr Amy McNeese-Mechan Leith Walk ward Deidre Brock MP Edinburgh North and Leith
Cllr Joanna Mowat City Centre ward Foysol Choudhury MSP Lothians region
Cllr Claire Miller City Centre ward

3 Minutes of 14 June AGM and ordinary meeting, and matters arising

3.a AGM minutes

  • Approved subject to correction of typos in items 4b and 4d (proposed R Price, seconded L Graham, ND)
  • No matters arising

3.b Ordinary meeting minutes

  • Approved subject to swapping ‘licensing’ and ‘registration’ in item 10a (proposed A Welsh, seconded D Henderson, ND)
  • Actions were mostly for M Birch – these have been completed.

4 Police report

See text of report in Appendix 1

There was concern that the report was simply a circular that’s not relevant to NTBCC’s area, and that it (and its covering email) did not mention a recent rape near Broughton St and an day-time assault on a gay couple.

  • Action : L Graham, C Nimmo to follow this up, asking what will be done to prevent recurrences of such violence.

5 Environment

5.a Summary of progress following the ‘Communal Bin Review Update’ (22 April T&E Committee) including decision to suspend Gull-Proof Bags service, position of residents’ associations as well as the wider discussion

Many attendees spoke against CEC’s decision. However, individual statements of this are omitted for conciseness.

C Nimmo noted

  • NTBCC and local residents’ associations (RAs) have been in contact with CEC committees, CEC members, Angus Robertson MSP (who will engage with CEC on this matter), Edinburgh World Heritage, Historic Environment Scotland and CEC director of place, expressing very strong concerns with
    • The decision to replace gull-proof bags (GPBs) and kerbside-recycling boxes (KRBs) with on-street bin-hubs.
    • The way this decision was made, including no notice that this decision was due apart from an entry in the CEC meeting agenda
    • Overall bypassing of statutory consultation and CEC’s stated desire to engage
    • Absence of environmental, equality and economic assessments
    • NTBCC’s deputation being refused
  • NTBCC wants CEC to rethink, asserting that GPBs are the currently best solution for domestic waste disposal for its area. (NTBCC is open to even better ones, if they arise. It acknowledges that there are imperfections at borders between GPB/KRB areas and areas with communal bins.) NTBCC is adamantly against the proposed bin-hubs.
    • GPBs and KRBs are only on-street for short periods [but hubs would be permanent].
    • All NTBCC-local RAs strongly support NTBCC’s position, as do residents – an online poll has 83% of responses supporting NTBCC’s campaign. NTBCC has leafletted residents, and is supporting RAs in this campaign.
  • Edinburgh World Heritage (EWH), Historic Environment Scotland (HES) and the Cockburn Association (CA) were not consulted:
    • EWH is in favour of GPBs and the current KRBs.
    • A ‘legal letter’ highlighting deficiencies in the decision process has been sent to CEC. Legal advice is being sought on further steps.
  • Freedom of information requests have been submitted – NTBCC awaits responses.
  • TRO pre-notices have been issued for other areas covered by the change. NTBCC would be in phase 4, so notices for its area have not yet been issued.
  • NTBCC’s environment committee is working on the wider ‘waste’ remit, so NTBCC represents all of its residents.

5.a.i Other NTBCC comments

  • A Gaillard:
    • thanks to cllr Doran for attending this meeting.
    • At the top of Leith Walk, KRBs did not work due to the traffic conditions here. Thee is a communal bin 60m from my flat, and recycling facilities 140m from my flat. (Glass recycling is further away.) I can recycle without driving.
    • However, communal hubs get messy, and are subject to fly-tipping and urination.
    • Edinburgh needs a variety of waste systems to fit local circumstances. For example some homes may not have space to store KRBs.
  • A Welsh: the combination of floods and on-street bin-hubs leads to unwelcome outcomes, as seen in Cockburn St etc.
  • A resident: will all streets in NTBCC’s area have bin-hubs?
    • C Nimmo: yes. Hence the widening on NTBCC’s environment committee’s remit.
  • Another resident some streets have containers. Will hubs be put in all streets in all area? (Yes, so will affect more than just current GPB areas)
  • A Gaillard:
    • CEC has a successful waste-incinerator. If this works, is recycling still needed?
    • Cllr Doran: I would not support removal of recycling – there is a big argument for it. The incinerator does heat 35,000 homes, and could be improved over time. However, it does emit some smoke, and I fear there would be more if it also burnt plastic etc.
  • D Clarke: NTBCC’s should be careful about the terms it uses. For example, GPBs may not mean much to some people, but ‘street-side mega bins’ would.
    • Another resident: the plans are not for ‘environmental hubs’ but ‘on-street rubbish tips’ every 100 m. It’s a return to the gardyloo of old.
    • C Nimmo: GPBs are much used in bath and London. They lead to increased personal responsibility and recycling.
  • Cllr Mitchell: please link up with CCs in my area – there are many upset people there. There has been no engagement.
    • Action: NTBCC to continue doing this
  • Cllr Doran:
    • I am vice-convenor of CEC transport and environment committee.
    • I support removal of GPBs. In part this is due to unions’ health and safety (H&S) concerns – GPBs can be ‘incredibly’ heavy, and H&S must be prioritised. I refute the horror-stories previously mentioned.
    • CEC is working with EWH on design and function of the hubs. Hubs have been considered for other parts of Edinburgh, but nothing has been finalised. The communal bin review has been under way for a few years, following demands by the city to examine how waste is handled. Demand came from New Town residents who were fed up with their bins being used by others, and overflowing despite daily collections. 10 years ago, seagulls infested the new town, and rubbish lay about.
    • People have complained bitterly about their streets’ communal bins being used by others.
    • Albert St has had a bin-hub for 5 years, and this has transformed the street, especially with waste needles. It still does have serious problems. CEC had put in skips, which helped, but this can’t be continued.
  • A resident: right now, Albert St is full of bins, seagulls and rubbish.
  • Cllr Doran:
    • I was talking about the hub. I reiterate that the street has problems, and that the design for new hubs has not yet been made. I acknowledge that EWH categorically prefers GPBs.
    • (in response to later questions) There has been no final decision on the design. It was decided at CEC transport and environment [to discontinue GPBs, and install hubs]. We cannot consult on everything – representatives have to make some decisions. There was an ‘enormous amount of communication’ before the decision was made. We are now starting to hear what people think about this. If you want consultation on every street, you must argue for it.
    • I have received no complaints about GPBs when I have met people, except for people complaining about overflowing [communal] bins.
  • C Nimmo: NTBCC does not want to inflict H&S issues but Bath tells NTBCC that it has had no H&S issues with GPBs.
  • M Birch: We appreciate Cllr Doran’s presence. CEC has not yet been able to supply information substantiating Cllr Doran’s points. (NTBCC awaits a response to a freedom of information request.) In any case, someone has to put refuse into bins. If it’s not trained staff, it will be residents, some of whom will have difficulties carrying waste to the hubs. Hence safety hazards are not eliminated, just transferred to residents. As far as NTBCC is aware, there has been no equalities assessment around this.
  • A resident: please provide evidence of H&S issues to do with GPBs – CEC has a duty to record details of all such incidents. Every street that has GPBs is not Different streets need different solutions.
  • D Clarke: I respect Cllr Doran’s bravery to face a meeting that that disagrees with her views. While there may be H&S issues with GPBs, this does not automatically mean that CEC’s current plans are correct. Do you mean that people from GPB-streets dump rubbish in other streets?
    • Cllr Doran: ‘That has been implied to me on a number of occasions.’
    • D Clarke: you should not base policies on hearsay! It is not NTBCC’s fault that you have not gathered data.
    • Cllr Doran: I mean that there is not a simple choice between this and that. I did not base my position on hearsay. I will now speak to officers about this. I acknowledge that there are problems with waste, not just in NTBCC
  • A Welsh: GPBs were introduced as an exception to solve a problem in particular areas. No single solution suits all areas, so a mutually agreeable exception for the World Heritage area should [still] be possible. I suspect the bin-hub decision is because CEC has already bought suitable lorries. Let’s be co-operative to ameliorate the waste issues.
  • A resident: What about the Old Town, which also faces these issues? There is a specification for the hubs already.
  • A McIntosh: I have heard of dumping of rubbish from GPB areas in communal bins numerous times, particularly rubbish being taken from Drummond Place to Northumberland St.
    • C Nimmo: this does not mean GPBs don’t work. They work well on various streets in NTBCC’s area.
  • M Birch: increasing recycling is one of CEC’s primary objectives. The evidence (including CEC’s own data) is communal bins are associated with lower levels of recycling, and that recycling rates are higher on GPB streets. So the question is how can we improve recycling across the city, and improve street cleanliness (not mentioned in the CEC report).
  • R Price: in East Claremont St and Bellevue there are houses with individual bins that tend to use the communal bins instead, but this is not an issue. The amount of recyclable material put into landfill bins is ‘absolutely unbelievable’, so something needs to change but it is not clear that this proposed change is correct. If bins are getting full, then the answer is collect them more often.
  • L Graham: I know there are no easy solutions. During the pandemic, there have been many more deliveries, leading to much packaging. In my part of Ireland, we drive to recycling points but this can’t be done in city centres. We should celebrate GPB residents who do sort their recycling, and an appropriate solution for the World Heritage. There needs to be thought on how to get people to move stuff to recycling areas. How can big companies such as Amazon contribute to recycling?
    • Cllr Doran: there has been discussion of such environmental issues. I am well aware of piles of Amazon packaging. Anything to do bins and parking will be a difficult conversation. The bin review was an attempt to discover what does and does not work. I will speak with environmental officer, and am disappointed that they have not contacted NTBCC. Would you like them to come?
    • C Nimmo: I said that no environmental impact assessment has been made. It is likely that we can inform environmental officers rather than them us. There is little difference of opinion: our poll consistently shows that 83% of respondents support our campaign (i.e. want the GPB bespoke solution for the World Heritage area).
  • M Birch: there is an NTBCC meeting on the wider waste subject at 3pm tomorrow. NTBCC environment convenor will need all the help he can get on this.

5.b Draft 2030 Climate Strategy – Council consultation open until 12 September – how should NTBCC respond? (Also workshops for community council members on 19 August & 26 August)

  • C Nimmo: NTBCC’s response the consultation will go on its website.
  • S Holledge: I suggest NTBCC’s environment committee meets after 26 August to finalise the strategy.
  • A resident: The cruise ships that dock at Leith are very polluting and of almost no economic value to Edinburgh.
  • Another resident: please include that RIBA and the Architect’s journal are clearly in favour of refurbishing buildings, not demolishing and rebuilding.
  • A Welsh: planning law needs to be modified to enable changes to listed buildings roofs – they were not designed for climate change.
  • R Price: Responses to climate issues need to include a hard look at planning policies. (Recently, more applications for double glazing in listed buildings have been granted but more is needed.). NTBCC should take part on 19th and 26th NTBCC could ask for an extension after 12 September. The consultation’s presentation has very little mention of community councils – it’s about industry and other possible investors delivering strategy.

6 Transport

See also full report in appendix 2. All points here made by M Birch unless otherwise noted.

6.a Proposed Low Emission Zone (LEZ) – consultation until 20 September – discussion on NTBCC response

  • NTBCC issued a deputation on the report considered by TEC on 17 June. The LEZ proposal is now in public consultation until 20 September. NTBCC needs to speak directly with CEC officials before it can write its submission.
    • A Welsh: there have been air quality action plans, including Queen St which exceeded NO2 particulate limits. However the current LEZ proposal omits Queen St.

6.b Spaces for people: retention of schemes

  • CEC has decided to go with original recommendations. However, this will go back to CEC’s transport and environment committee (TEC) on 19 August, potentially giving a further opportunity for input.
  • There are complaints about measures that are due to be retained, especially at Canonmills/Broughton Rd junction, where removal of the left-turn lane is delaying south-bound trafficand causing problems for bus drivers avoiding East London St. NTBCC is disappointed that the request for more pedestrian space here has been refused.
    • Action: NTBCC to submit a further deputation on 19 August.
  • C Nimmo: the top of Broughton St is working, but the bottom suffers much congestion.
  • Cllr Mitchell: different sections of Broughton St are scored differently. Cllr Barrie and I await news on the Munro Place part of the scheme.
  • R Price: SfP assessment splits Brougton St into 3, but I believe thereare two entities: one includes cyclists entering from the north Edinburgh network, the other below the Broughton Road/Rodney St junction. I have never seen anyone walking in the coned-off section. NTBCC’s approach needs to be more nuanced than ‘we support’ and ‘we oppose’.
  • Cllr Barrie: CEC is now obliged to either remove schemes or agree their continuance via its committees.

6.c Traffic noise

  • There had been an issue on Bellevue with buses heading south in the evening. There are now morning problems. There have been positive conversations with Lothian Buses, but they need support from CEC roads to make changes.
  • MB has met with East London St residents, who are gathering local views on, e.g. partial resurfacing of the street

6.d Trams

  • NTBCC is not yet aware of the contents of the TRO to go to TEC on 19 August, but may wish to submit a deputation.
  • Modelling of impacts (including congestion, which leads to atmospheric pollution) on Picardy Place is under way. Issues with this TRO will not be handled by the DPEA, because of the Tram Act, so this is the last opportunity to seek changes.
    • Action: NTBCC to reiterate objections as appropriate.
  • There is currently little tram-work from London Rd to Picardy Place, so the Tram team has a new traffic management plan that would maintain a traffic-lane along York Place to Leith Walk, enable traffic coming up Broughton St to turn left into Picardy Place, and enable traffic to turn left from York Place onto Broughton St. This would mitigate concerns about traffic going through the New Town, but has not yet been approved. West-bound traffic on York Place will be disallowed for a period, being diverted via Princes St (involving removal of some Spaces for People restrictions). There would also be a period when traffic cannot cross York Place to get to Broughton St. NTBCC is still concerned that more traffic may use Annandale St, thus impacting East London St. This work would start in November 2021 at the earliest.
    • Action: M Birch to circulate fuller details

7 Planning

See report in appendix 3. All points made by R Price unless otherwise noted.

7.a 108 – 114 & 116 Dundas Street – DMSC hearing (date TBC)

  • A hearing on this is imminent.
  • A Gaillard: I have obtained details of the last 40 years’ planning history, and watched the planning officer’s presentation. She omitted dormer windows that have been present for about 10 years. She emphasised original intentions around the building line, but didn’t take into account the last 40 years. When is the hearing? I can create a presentation for of NTBCC. Which groups would be involved, even if they are local and/or not officially constituted?
    • R Price: it’s never clear who will be invited to hearings, but NTBCC strongly believes residents should have a voice.
    • R Price: there are two applications: one for behind 108, 114-116 Dundas St (demolition of the 1980s buildings, adding ~45 residential units); another for Henderson Place Lane (consultation finished, application not yet lodged).
    • K Lochrie: Henderson Place would go from 2 to 5 storeys – this fits the site. But Edinburgh seems to be changing character by building high and to the kerb, hence obscuring views.

7.b New Town Quarter Plot 1 planning application

  • All applications for NTQ have been approved except for ‘plot 1’, hence a further application for here (without hotel, with more residential accommodation) has been expected. There would be ~90 units, mostly 1 bedroom/affordable, others build-to-rent. It’s not clear there are grounds for objections – this application doesn’t change the look, just the internal use. (NTBCC had supported inclusion of a hotel.) – but propose submitting a note of remaining issues
  • Original plans to build a hotel were not approved. The original plan met the 25% affordable housing rule. The new plans still do so, by including more affordable housing in this application.
    • A resident: how will affordable housing affect the prices of the other flats? The real issue is the proposal is to demolish an ‘OK’ building, replacing it with something worse, in contravention of policy. The DMSC has decided there must be a crossing through the site across Dundas St, which is fine in principle, but it’s proposed to move the bus-stop to accommodate the crossing to outside nearby shops, who will object to this.
    • R Price: a crossing was mentioned in the planning report, possibly so the developer would pay for the crossing. This would need CEC roads’ approval, which is separate from planning. I agree the bus-stop should not be moved.
    • A resident: CEC roads would have input via ‘development control’ but there would be concerning a mix of shop-deliveries, the crossing and the bus-stop.
    • K Lochrie: the block would have 174 flats (87 single-bed). The roof would be slightly sloped, leading to apartheid between renters and ‘affordable’ tenants. During summer, there would be much noise on the roof. Hence management of the block is important, even if this can’t be written into a planning approval.
    • R Price: NTBCC has discussed such points with the developers. They are points for inclusion in NTBCC’s submission.
    • A Gaillard: affordable housing is for households with annual income less than £44,000. So affordable housing is not social housing. It aims to enable people to live in central areas.
    • A Gaillard: NTBCC should support outdoor festival venues.
  • C Nimmo: was there mitigation of Applecross residents’ concerns?
    • R Price: yes. There was concern about a courtyard but this will now be larger, and not overlooked by new flats.

7.c 16 Annandale St

  • There have been several applications over the years. A further one is likely: this would replace an office with 9 residential units. Face-to-face in late August discussions have been offered.

7.d Local development plan

  • The last LDP was published in 2016. A draft update is due in September. Consultation will happen soon.
  • A detailed action plan is due to go to CEC committee very soon, then will go to the Scottish reporter.

8 Licensing

Action: relevant material to be put on NTBCC website

9 Engagement and communications

9.a ‘Use of Public Spaces for Events’ Working Group (PSMP) update / next steps

  • S Holledge: The last full meeting on PSE was on 21 July. I Buchanan then stated that the key principles are now fixed, and will be reported to CEC culture and communities committee on 14 September. The final set of guidelines will be reported in early 2022. The key principles have been explored in great detail but other matters have not yet been evaluated. Hence NTBCC is concerned what will go through on these dates.

10 Any other business & news from local residents’ associations etc

10.a ‘Adopt a street’ by local residents’ / friends’ groups – any interest?

Held over to September

11 Appendix 1: police report

Report PDF is on NTBCC website at https://www.ntbcc.org.uk/august-police-report

11.a Looking Back

Perhaps the most alarming incident in July was the assault on the priest at St Marys Cathedral however thankfully a quick identification and subsequent arrest was made of the perpetrator down in Cumbria and he was remanded in custody.

Bike crime as always features in the monthly figures, a motor bike was stolen from Hart Street and there was an attempted theft of a motor bikes at St Andrews Square. There was also a theft of a pedal cycle wheel and attempted thefts of pedal bikes at Waterloo Place. An electric bike was stolen at Abercromby Place.

“ Just Eat” hire bikes are always being tampered with and two were stolen this month by youths. Our crime prevention department are working with Transport for Edinburgh to try and devise better security for these bikes.

There were two commercial break-ins this month to city centre premises, enquiries ongoing to trace culprits. No domestic break ins.

11.b What We’re Noticing

Youth calls have been on the rise no doubt due to summer holidays and the good weather and more access to fast food establishments like McDonalds who called us several times.

There has been a decrease in calls regarding Covid concerns as restrictions are lessoning but a rise in calls to licensed premises and associated antisocial behaviour.

As I’m sure many of you are aware, there have been a large number of people within the city centre, especially groups of youths with the summer holidays in full flow. From call volume, it would appear that many of these youths have migrated away from the city centre area. We are, of course cautious, that this could change, so would encourage any instances of anti-social behaviour be reported to us.

11.c Looking Forward

We are bracing ourselves and preparing for the opening of nightclubs on the 9th August with reports of night clubs being booked out from midnight until 0500 already.

Operation “Summer City” is now well under way for festival related city centre policing with officers patrolling the venue areas and general busier parts of the city due to the more local tourists in town this year.

As a city centre community team, supplemented with further officers, there will be a dedicated foot patrol team ensuring that people can enjoy the festivities in a safe and considerate matter. Having the knowledge and experience of city centre officers will be invaluable to patrol areas of interest along with the festival activity.

Kind Regards,

City Centre Community Policing Team

11.d Advice and Support

See PDF for leaflets on trustedtrader.scot and RNLI’s water-safety advice

11.d.i Theft from Vehicles Prevention Advice

Always lock your car and ensure windows are completely closed.

Keep your car key safe and out of sight of windows/doors.

If possible, don’t leave belongings in your car. Take them with you if you can. If not, lock them in the boot out of sight.

Ensure the following are kept out of sight: Money/Credit cards, Mobile phones, Laptops/Tablets, any other items of value.

When parking, look for a ParkMark sign – Car park has passed an inspection and is considered a safe place to park.

11.e About Us

Local Area Commander: Chief Inspector Sam Ainslie

City Centre Community Policing Team – West End Police Station

Inspector Mark Hamilton

Sergeant Cameron Walker

Sergeant David Duthie

Plus 8 officers allocated to community issues in Edinburgh’s City Centre.

Contact Us

101 for non emergencies

contactus@Scotland.pnn.police.uk

Twitter: @EdinPolSE

Facebook: Edinburgh Police Division

Web: www.scotland.police.uk

 

 

 

12 Appendix 2: transport report

12.a Spaces for People

We presented a written deputation to the full Council meeting on 24 June regarding the retention of the Spaces for People measures. A copy of that deputation is attached. Despite our concerns the Council voted to proceed with the recommended plans for retention of certain measures in our area of the City.

It is interesting to note that the Governance, Risk and Best Value Committee will be considering a very critical report tomorrow from the Council’s own internal audit team which gives an overall opinion stating that Significant Improvement is Required across the Council’s business. The report highlights a number of deficiencies in the use of the data from the Commonplace mapping exercise in the Spaces for People plans and the management of this work. These are issues we have highlighted previously.

We continue to receive complaints concerning the Spaces for People measures that are to be retained and in particular the changes at Canonmills at its junction with Broughton Road. We know that the removal of the left hand lane is creating problems for bus drivers making this turn and is resulting in significant delays for all traffic heading south. The lack of any improvement for pedestrians makes it hard to justify the retention of this measure but so far it appears that the Council is determined to do so. We understand that all of the Spaces for People measures will be considered again at the 19th August Transport and Environment committee so there may be an opportunity to once again lobby for a rethink.

Decision: Do we wish to submit a further deputation on this subject or await a further period of public consultation as the Council seeks to amend any TRO in place for the current measures?

12.b Traffic Noise and Vibration Issues

I had a further positive communications with management from Lothian Buses relating to noise and vibration associated with buses based at the Annandale Street garage. There has though been a lack of any progress on repairing the road surfaces of diversionary routes for the Trams project. I have written to the Convenor of the Transport and Environment Committee and have received a positive response but await any action to progress the repairs.

I met with residents on East London Street to discuss their long-standing concerns. They are in the process of gathering residents’ views on a number of issues including whether the street should be partially resurfaced to reduce traffic noise and future traffic calming measures.

12.c Tram Works

12.c.i Traffic Regulation Orders

The Trams Team have provided further information on their consideration of the various comments included in our objection to the Trams TRO. There remains significant concern about the actual traffic levels and in particular congestion once the various proposed changes are implemented. We will be providing further clarification of our concerns to the Trams Team but at present we understand that the Transport and Environment Committee will consider this matter on 19th August. As this TRO is covered by the Trams Act there will be no further opportunity to challenge the content of this TRO, which covers the whole route of the Trams extension.

Decision: Depending on what is finally recommended, whether we wish to submit a deputation on this subject.

12.c.ii Picardy Place Work and Traffic Management Plans

We have received a further update from the Trams Team about the planned traffic diversions that will be required once work on the section between York Place and London Road commences late this year. The yet to be approved traffic management plan includes maintaining a route for traffic from Queen Street to Leith Walk and leaves Broughton Street open for southbound traffic throughout the planned work, which will mitigate our concerns about traffic being diverted along residential streets through the New Town. There will be a period of time when traffic will not be able to travel west along York Place and during that time an alternative route via Princes Street is planned. It is likely though that some traffic will decide to use Annandale Street and East London Street during this closure. We continue to press the Tram Team to ensure that there are suitable mitigations in place should traffic along this route increase.

12.d Low Emission Zone

The Transport and Environment Committee meeting on 17 June approved a report that includes a recommendation to proceed with a more limited LEZ than we had sought. It would not include Queen Street, London Road or Regent Road all of which have significant traffic. Attached is a copy of the deputation that we submitted to the T&E Committee. Public consultation on the LEZ has now commenced and will run until 20 September. Further information about the Council’s plans and the online survey can be found at the Council Consultation Hub.

It is recommended that we arrange a meeting with the Council officials to review their plans and allow us to raise our concerns in particular regarding the boundaries of the LEZ directly with them. Following that meeting, the Transport Committee will prepare a recommended response to the consultation. This will be reviewed at the September NTBCC meeting.

Decision: Agree to arrange a meeting with CEC officials to discuss the latest plan and prepare response to public consultation for approval by NTBCC at September meeting.

Prepared by Mike Birch, 9 August 2021

 

 

13 Appendix 3: planning report

13.a Current Planning Applications (currently being assessed)

13.a.i New Town Quarter (RBS site – Plot 1)

The latest New Town North application for replacing the hotel in the ‘Minded to Grant’ application (20/03034/FUL) with more residential units (21/03481/FUL) has now closed for comments. Although initially there were very few comments registered – as of 9 August – the Planning portal shows 22 objections with 3 in support. The Friends of King George V Park have objected. My understanding is that the Eyre Place (Applecross) residents are broadly receptive to the new proposal. No comments have been received from other residents’ groups.

The original application (20/03034/FUL along with the demolition consent) were approved subject to concluding a Section 75 Legal Agreement covering education, transport & public realm contributions. We have been informed that the agreement will be concluded in the next week. The approval covered all development on the site except for the section running from the new access from Dundas St to KGVP to the Applecross building at the Eyre Place / Dundas St junction.

Members of the NTBCC Planning Committee attended a presentation from 10 Design (& Ediston / Turley) on the new proposal – which replaces the previous proposed 116-bedroom hotel & 88 Mid-Market Rent (MMR) ‘affordable housing’ units with 66 ‘Build to Rent’ (BTR) units and 108 MMR ’affordable’ units as well as 4 ground floor commercial units (area 667m²).

Approximately 50% of the MMR & BTR units are 1 bed. Overall a nett increase of ~90 residential units.

The other significant aspect of the redesign is available amenity space for the MMR & BTR residents – mainly provided by a multi-level roof terrace – which has separate sections for the MMR & BTR residents given the change in levels. The ground level internal courtyard (accessible from Dundas Street is shared use.

Although the period for comments via the Planning portal has now closed, NTBCC have been granted a short extension to submit their representation. Given the relatively insignificant impact of this change on the overall already-consented scheme, the one remaining concern would be the move from a ‘residential-lead’ scheme to one that is now essentially 95%+ residential & the consequential impact on local amenities and facilities.

Decision: Do we wish to submit a representation & if so – what stance should NTBCC take

13.a.ii 108 – 114 & 116 Dundas Street

Proposal for demolition of existing office buildings (Centrum / BUPA House), replacing with a mixed-use development of 48 flats with 3 commercial units (Class 1, 2 and 3 uses), amenity space & basement level car park.

NTBCC along with residents, the Cockburn & other heritage organisations either objected or raised significant concerns with the original scheme which was then amended prior to being determined. NTBCC, residents groups & the Cockburn maintained their objection. A request for a hearing at the DMSC (Development Management Sub-Committee) was lodged which was narrowly supported. Overall 62 comments, 59 objecting.

The date for the hearing has not yet been set & neither have the parties that can make a deputation been confirmed but this is expected in the next few weeks.

Decision: NTBCC to confirm support for continuing their objection to this scheme, making a deputation at the DMSC & to encourage the Cockburn Association to also attend.

13.a.iii Powderhall Bowling Green – Intergenerational Living & Nursery

NTBCC didn’t ultimately submit a representation) but are still interested in the outcome .

Recent amendment to shift the building footprint ~1 metre to the east to avoid a tree Root Protection Area but now expect that this is brought before the DMSC in the next few weeks. Meanwhile, work to refurbish the stable block is well underway https://www.curriebrown.com/en/media/press-releases/2021/powderhall-regeneration-well-underway/

13.a.iv 64 Princes Street (former BHS store)

Application approved some time ago for conversion from retail . New Change of Use sought for leisure & Food / beverage use in the basement unit of the former BHS on Princes Street https://bit.ly/3BT6hoo

Proposed operator is Roxy Ballroom with activities incl. bowling, pool, ping pong tables, crazy golf, ice curling & shuffleboard.

Venue accessed from Rose Street.

Decision : No NTBCC representation proposed.

13.a.v Northumberland Street Lane

Following contact from local residents, NTBCC submitted a representation to a proposal to form a ‘subterranean’ basement beneath a previously-consented mews house. Current Local Plan policies are reasonably silent for proposals such as this but submission highlighted steps being taken elsewhere to protect adjacent listed buildings. HES have been consulted but as is normal for Householder applications such as this, they did not submit any comment.

Application still ‘Awaiting assessment’

13.b Pre-consultation Applications

13.b.i Henderson Place Lane

The pre-consultation for a development proposal on Henderson Place Lane, replacing current office building with residential block of ~40 units by Morgan McDonnell Architecture has finished. More here https://hendersonplace.co.uk

NTBCC have not yet responded to the consultation.

13.b.ii 16 Annandale Street

NTBCC have been contacted regarding a new proposal for redevelopment at 16 Annandale Street on the site of the existing Hackland & Dore offices. There have been a number of previous proposals of varying scale on the site – initially including the Enterpricse car Rental office.

“This is a proposal which has taken nearly two years to conceive with extensive options appraisals by our studio and a thorough pre-application dialogue with Nancy Jamieson in the City of Edinburgh Planning Team.

We have a local scale planning application for nine units in this redevelopment. Whilst this does not require pre-consultation, we have decided to hold an informal drop-in event for neighbours, local community council, local ward councillors and those of the immediately adjoining ward on 24th August and 25th August 2021.”

NTBCC has voiced their appreciation for the offer of early involvement and have accepted the opportunity to attend.

Local neighbours also informed.

13.c Other News

13.c.i Observatory House – Calton Hill

Collective Edinburgh have secured a ‘tailored investment package’ towards renovating the A-listed Observatory House (formerly Vivat House ) and adapting it to become accommodation for visitors and artists.

https://ahfund.org.uk/news/latest/collective-takes-on-observatory-house-to-expand-their-offering-into-the-hospitality-sector/

13.c.ii City Plan 2030

Understand that this will published in the coming weeks for consultation (as highlighted but not discussed at the June NTBCC meeting by Mike Birch). It will then undergo a public consultation & then be finalised prior to submission to the Scottish Reporters for final approval.

NTBCC submitted a long and detailed submission at an earlier stage of the process.

Also, related to this, this week’s Council’s Planning Committee will consider the Edinburgh Local Development Plan Action programme.

13.c.iii London Road (ex)-Toilet Block

Proposal for the ex-London Road toilet block for conversion to a restaurant following its sale by Edinburgh Council – an alternate use is probably to be supported – similar to the (ex)-toilets at Canonmills – now with a new tenant arranged .

13.c.iv 39 London Street & 37A London Street

The proposal for redeveloping the vacant and /or derelict Funeral Parlour and basement into 8 STL’s was refused by the DMSC earlier this year. The applicant has now appealed the decision to the Scottish Reporter.

The grounds for appeal are now lodged on the DPEA website.

Local residents informed.

Prepared by Richard Price, 9 August 2021