50 new homes for Fife village approved despite ‘rat run’ concerns

A “significant extension” to a tranquil North east Fife town has been approved.
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The development of 50 new, high quality homes, 15 of which will be affordable, on land south of Main Street in Colinsburgh was approved by North East Fife planning councillors on Wednesday. Despite concerns that the secondary entrance from Mayfield Terrace would create a “rat run”, the plans from Aberdeenshire-based housing developer Kirkwood Homes, was unanimously given the green light.

The newly approved development will sit on a 4.7 hectare farm field just 120 metres to the East of the Colinsburgh Conservation Area, and it will be a “significant extension” to the current village.

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As part of the proposals, Kirkwood Homes is working with Balcarres Estate on the development which would also see investment in the existing play park and open landscape spaces to the south of the site. The company said the proposals will provide “immediate and long-term benefits” by enhancing the school roll, local infrastructure and facilities. The additional residents could also provide the opportunity for new facilities and new businesses “to view Colinsburgh as an attractive and sustainable business location.

The housing development has been approved by councillors. (Pic: Submitted)The housing development has been approved by councillors. (Pic: Submitted)
The housing development has been approved by councillors. (Pic: Submitted)

Councillors didn’t raise many objections to the development itself or the addition to Colinsburgh that it represents. Their concerns largely centred on the narrow, secondary entrance from Mayfield Terrace.

“I think there is a difference between how roads and transportation assess a road - yes, legal use of the road would conform to all safety regulations. However, when there is a traffic jam, as is frequently the case when people turn right at the garage or there are people at the crossing, that area is an ideal little rat run down Fairfield and along Mayfield and back up again,” Councillor Alycia Hayes (SNP for East Neuk and Landward) said. “I think this entrance risks bringing a substantial increase in traffic there which would be disruptive to the residential area.”

The idea for a second entrance came from planning officers to encourage integration between the new homes and Colinsburgh community.

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“It’s part of our ‘Good-Place-Making’ advice, and there’s no reason why they can’t provide a second entrance,” councillors were told. “It’s always better to have two access points for a site of this size."

Allan Rae, land director at Kirkwood Homes, said his company welcomed the planners’ secondary entrance proposals and hoped the improvements would “yield substantial improvements in road safety for both the development and wider village.”

“Providing substantial investment into the village, we are committed to delivering this project that will not only enhance, but serve to improve the long-term vitality of this historic East Neuk village,” he said.