Don’t blame us for Coaltown project axe

The site earmarked for the development
The site earmarked for the development

Council planning officers have defended the way they proceeded with a proposal to build 24 new homes in Coaltown of Balgonie, after the plans were scrapped last week.

Officers came under fire from disgruntled residents and Councillor Ross Vettraino after they abandoned the site proposal following a Scottish Water report highlighted issues of low water pressure and drainage issues on land in Lady Nina Square.

David Robertson from Fife Council’s investment and development department explained that when considering any housing proposal, plans needed to be drawn up to a certain level of detail.

He told the Gazette: “We have to provide an idea of the number of homes and their sizes to allow for meaningful consultation with the relevant agencies, such as Scottish Water. Without such plans this would not be possible.

“The consultation with Scottish Water has revealed that substantial work would be required to ensure adequate water pressure for the development and to manage the discharge of surface water away from the site.

“As this work would come at a significant cost, we have unfortunately decided not to proceed any further with this particular proposal.

“More affordable housing is needed right across Fife and we are looking into alternative developments in Glenrothes that could replace the homes that had been proposed here.”

Coaltown residents have complained of low water pressure in the area for a number of years.

Five years ago, fire crews attending a blaze in Main Street failed to obtain enough water pressure for their hoses from one of the hydrants. The situation is yet to be rectified.

Councillor Ross Vettraino said he has now written to the utility company asking them to rectify the problem now that it has been confirmed there is pressure issues.