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Although planning permission in principle has been granted for the Garden District out to the west of the city, the area is of such importance that the Scottish Ministers have ‘called it in’.

The planning authority is the City of Edinburgh Council and they granted planning permission in principle in June 2016. Scottish Ministers usually only ‘call in’ a planning decision when there are issues important not only to the local area but the national context. Applications can be dealt with in this way in terms of the planning legislation up to the date on which the planning authority grants or refuses permission.

The Scottish Government already gave notice to the council in March 2016 that any major applications for housing in the west of the city would perhaps be scrutinised by Scottish Ministers in this way. The council was placed under a duty to advise the Ministers of any such large scale housing developments. In July 2016 the Scottish Government required that this application would be determined by them. They will proceed to do so later this month.

They did so partly on the basis that it would have potential impact on the infrastructure in West Edinburgh.

Murray Estates plan to build 1350 homes at Redheughs Village, and now the plans are set to be considered in detail.

The plans are being put forward with support from near neighbours Royal Bank of Scotland which has its HQ at Gogarburn where 6,000 people work. The developers have given an assurance that disruption for the bank and its employees will be kept to a minimum.

The 1350 homes will include 330 affordable homes a new primary and nursery school and a 40 acre park.

Mr David D. Murray, Managing Director of Murray Capital Group, parent company of Murray Estates, commented:

“The ‘Garden District’ project is a critically important development for the economic benefit of Scotland’s capital. The city economy desperately needs a good mixture of quality housing that is well connected to Edinburgh’s growing transport infrastructure, including the new Edinburgh Gateway Station. If approved, this development will meet those needs and help unlock growth in a wonderful living environment.

“We have worked closely with those organisations neighbouring the development, not least SASA and Royal Bank of Scotland, and are now delighted to have secured their support.”

SASA is the Science & Advice for Scottish Agriculture and this body withdrew its objection in October 2017.

Malcolm Buchanan, Chair of Royal Bank of Scotland’s Scotland Board, said:

“We have held constructive discussions withMurray Capital Group and are delighted that they have committed to ensuring disruption to our HQ is kept to an absolute minimum. We are very supportive of growing the city’s economy and hope that this new ‘Garden District’ will help deliver a significant boost to businesses and communities in the region.”