Expansion plan for Kinghorn given go ahead

Approval has been given for 133 new homes in Kinghorn.
Approval has been given for 133 new homes in Kinghorn.

A new housing development which would significantly increase the size of Kinghorn has been approved by planners.

The proposal by Lovell Partnership Ltd to build 133 new homes on two areas of land lying either side of the B923 Kinghorn to Burntisland Road was given the go-ahead by Fife Council’s Central Area Planning Committee.

The new dwellings, which comprises of a mixture of two, three, four and five-bedroom homes in a combination of 14 different detached and semi-detached designs, are to be built on the former tannery site of the Lochside Leatherworks, which ceased operations in 2001.

Historically, the site is also reported to have been used as a railway siding before 1941, a candle works after World War I, and a naval store for the Ministry of Defence thereafter.

As part of the consent the site will also comprise of 15 per cent of affordable units, of which it has been agreed 10 will be registered to a social landlord, with a further 10 constructed for low-cost ownership.

A recommendation to conditionally approve the proposal was agreed subject to a legal agreement being accepted that would see the developer provide £113,000 to provide a play park as part of the finished development.

Payments of £250,000 for Kinghorn Primary, £287,532 for Balwearie High and £31,878 for St Marie’s RC Primary School, are also to be agreed to address future capacity impacts the completed site will have on the three facilities.

Concern was raised over whether the reduction of the speed limit from 40mph to 30pmh along the B923, which splits the two site areas, would be sufficient considering the number of houses approved.

“I have concerns that the reduction of the speed limit from 30 to 20mph is not sufficient,” said Councillor John Beare.

“In a residential area, of which we are asked to approve here, that limit should be 20mph.

“Had this been a stand-alone site we would deem 30mph to be acceptable.”

Officers confirmed that the issue had been raised with Fife Council’s transportation services, who had advised that the 30mph limit was accepted as “appropriate” with regard to this development and that there had been no significant opposition to the speed proposal by ward councillors.

However, it was accepted that the issue could come before Kirkcaldy Area Committee for review at a later stage if deemed necessary.

As part of the proposal, a number of beech trees and a small wooded area are to be removed, as well as the junction which straddles the two site areas is also to remodelled.

The site has already been subject to a number of previous planning approvals.

In July 2005, planning permission in principle was granted for 110 houses. A subsequent full application for 139 houses was submitted in November 2006, but later withdrawn in June 2007.

A further application for 131 houses and a 61-bed care home on the tannery site was approved in April 2010 but has since lapsed.