Business park approved

Former Diosynth site outside of Buckhaven
Former Diosynth site outside of Buckhaven

Councillors have agreed to approve planning permission in principle for a new business park at the former Diosynth site in Buckhaven.

At the Central Area Planning Committee last week, elected members voted in favour of the plans which would see the land at Muiredge turned into a new energy park to complement the already existing site in Lower Methil.

However, a number of councillors raised several concerns, many relating to transportation around the proposed site, as well as possible noise to local residents.

Noting that the business park would be “tremendous for both Levenmouth and the Energy Park”, Councillor David Alexander said: “I’m glad that common sense has prevailed here... but I am concerned about the junction.”

Cllr Alexander said that plans for access at Percival Road could result in the area becoming an accident black spot because of the number of heavy goods vehicles which could potentially be using the road.

His concerns were echoed by Cllr Peter Grant who said: “We should want to see this progress... but I do have concerns about transportation. It is a difficult junction now, and it doesn’t need that much more to make it worse. We have to be very smart about how we design the access.

“We should be pushing ahead with this as quickly as we can but we don’t want to see a serious accident as a result.”

The suggestion that a roundabout or no-right-turn restriction may be more favourable than the current junction format was well received by a number of councillors, and it was agreed that designs for the junction would be concluded at a later date.

Bringing the discussion to a close, Cllr Tom Adams, chair of the committee, said: “I’m very pleased this has at last come before us. It’s great to see a piece of the jigsaw falling into position and this is crucial to the energy park as a whole.”

The controversial site has been included in a number of planning applications over the last four years. In 2008, the Levenmouth Area Committee refused an application for full residential use of the site, and a later appeal was also declined.

In 2010, an application for planning permission for 89 dwelling houses was declined, and in 2012 and 2013, plans for a care home, sheltered housing and dwelling houses were also refused by the full Fife Council.