New housing development divides community views

Cupar Road field in Leven, loooking on to Largo Road, where Barratt Homes' development could be built if approved.
Cupar Road field in Leven, loooking on to Largo Road, where Barratt Homes' development could be built if approved.

A MEETING to discuss a new housing development in Leven saw around 60 residents turn up to consult with builders last week.

The initial proposal by Barratt East Homes to create around 100 properties on a five-hectare field bordering Cupar Road have elicited a mixed response from the public, mostly in opposition.

If approved, the residential scheme of family homes would be comparable in size to nearby Coldstream.

One local resident, who did not wish to be named, said he was “horrified” to see how large the proposed development would be.

“The congestion would be absolutely awful,” he commented.

A spokesperson from Barratt said most visitors to the meeting at The Centre in Leven were opposed but understood the site had been zoned for residential development in the Mid-Fife Local Plan, adopted in January.

“The majority of concerns surrounded the safety of Cupar Road,” he explained.

“Barratt will be conducting a transport assessment and liaising with the roads department to ensure that Cupar Road and any access(es) on to it are constructed in a way that will make the road safer than it is currently.”

Barratt’s proposed design is undnerstood to include vehicle access points at the north and south, pedestrian routes, a public open space in the middle of the development, and an area for on-site natural drainage.

Before submitting its plans to Fife Council next spring, Barratt intends to take into consideration comments from the public gathered from a 12-week long consultation period.

Plans to develop the field, and two others neighbouring it, in 2003 led to a public enquiry which ruled against on grounds of great landscape value.

This latest plan represents the fifth attempt to develop the site and residents such as Stewart Kirkwood, hope it happens.

On the Mail’s Facebook page, he said: ”I think it’s a good thing. Not much has been built in the north east of the town in recent years and that part of the town is closer to local amenities than Castlefleurie, etc., in the west of the town.

“The objections will no doubt come in from people in Coldstream Avenue, etc., but let’s be frank – this is pure nimby stuff, not wanting their views of Largo Law to be obscured.”

However, reader Lynne Docherty countered: “What’s the point of housing in the east when the “new” development in the west has been ongoing for years and still isn’t finished?

“It would be awful for another housing scheme to sit half-finished for years on end.

“Finish the Diageo end of the town before starting anything else!”