Councillors approve development proposals

The decision was delayed

 The move comes after delaying the decision in August because of concerns houses were being built so quickly, supporting infrastructure was not able to keep pace. 

A seminar addressed concerns about infrastructure issues including GP waiting lists

A seminar on the plan was held recently to address councillors’ concerns about issues including public transport, GP waiting lists and teacher numbers.

A new Newtongrange medical practice will open next summer

Councillors heard that a new medical practice in Newtongrange with capacity for up to 5,000 patients will open in summer 2017. Danderhall Medical Practice will expand to accommodate 3,000 new patients and, by around 2023, a new practice will open in Shawfair town centre. 

We are working to address future pupil numbers at our schools

In response to the significant growth in pupil numbers, the Education Service, Property Services and Planning are working closely together in order to ensure that there is an ongoing strategic plan for the school estate which spans to 2050. It will deliver on a commitment to create a world-class education service in Midlothian.  Potential proposals include building a new secondary school along the A701 corridor.

Work is underway to improve punctuality and capacity on the Borders Railway

Councillors also heard about a commitment by Abellio ScotRail, the Borders Railway operator, to address capacity and scheduling issues on the line.

The plan needs to be approved by all six member councils

The proposed Strategic Development Plan was approved by the SESplan Joint Committee on 20 June 2016.  The governance arrangements of the Strategic Development Planning Authority for Edinburgh and South East Scotland require all of the six member councils to ratify the plan before it can be formally published for a period of notification and receipt of representations.  That will now take place in the autumn.

Midlothian already has enough land identified for housing developments up to 2030

A key element of the plan is the amount of land required for housing development in the period 2018-2030. However, the target figure for Midlothian can be met on sites already in existing and emerging local development plans, thereby not needing any additional land allocated for that period.

The council heard on Tuesday that delaying any decision would have significant adverse effects.

The provost used his casting vote

Nine councillors voted in favour of ratifying the plan while nine councillors voted against. The provost, Councillor Joe Wallace used his casting vote in favour of ratification.

30 Sep 2016