We are delighted to announce that Senior Planner Julie Waldron has been named 2021 SuDS Champion in the “Experienced SuDS Professional” category.
Run annually by Susdrain, the awards invite the water industry to nominate someone who they believe has gone ‘the extra mile’ to be recognised for their achievements to inspire, inform and influence the delivery of SuDS.
To develop a long-term and sustainable approach to river, coastal and storm water management across the city and its environs, respecting our unique historic heritage. This will involve all stakeholders and address the flooding and water quality risks associated with our changing climate as a result of changes in rainfall and sea level rise.
One key aim of the vision is the need to manage the first 5mm of rainfall within every new development plot.
This is a big change for both planning, transport and building standards, and will require building more raingardens, green roofs and other sustainable urban drainage features in developments. Everyone can help, by thinking about ‘holding back’ their water in their own gardens using raingardens and water butts. Even a small amount will collectively, across the city, make a significant difference.
We are developing our own guidance, which is currently in draft, and will be shared very soon.
Overall this will help hold back water from the sewers and the rivers especially important in times of intense rainfall, allow more plants to grow and wildlife to thrive and create greener places for people to live, work and visit. It will also support healthier, happier and better off communities.
Low Emission Zones (LEZs) aim to reduce air pollution, since it presents a significant threat to public health. It is especially harmful to young children, the elderly and those suffering from pre-existing conditions, including heart and lung diseases.
We last updated you on the proposed LEZ on the Planning Edinburgh Blog back in December 2020.
They are being introduced across Scotland’s four largest cities: Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen and Dundee in response to dangerous levels of air pollution generated by road traffic.
LEZs improve public health by discouraging the most polluting vehicles from entering an area. Benefits of this Zone will extend beyond the city centre by improving air quality, encouraging more sustainable travel and supporting the reduction of greenhouse gases across the city.
The LEZ is planned to start the LEZ on 31st May 2022, however enforcement would not begin until 1st June 2024 – a ‘grace period’ of 2 years, which aims to help individuals and organisations to get ready.
Some exemptions will apply to the LEZ rules for example, disabled persons (including blue badge holders), historic vehicles and emergency vehicles as well as others outlined in the ‘Proposal to Make a LEZ’ consultation document.
The Council also has the powers to consider local ‘time-limited’ exemptions in exemptional and unique circumstances.
All details of the proposed LEZ are outlined in full in the ‘Proposal to Make a LEZ’ consultation document. This contains the following information:
Edinburgh’s LEZ Objectives and why we think the LEZ is required and appropriate
The proposed LEZ start date, operation times and grace period
The scope of vehicle types that will be included in the LEZ
Responses, comments or feedback can also be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org,
or posted to: Low Emission Zone, Waverley Court G3, East Market Street, Edinburgh, EH8 8BG
Depending on the volume of feedback received, it is hoped that a final LEZ scheme can be formally published towards the end of 2021 and agreed by the Council and Scottish Ministers early in 2022 before it is implemented in May 2022.
This year’s Scottish Design Awards is to be held on the 15 July. Open to all architects, engineers, graphic, interior and digital designers, the awards seek to serve as a champion of best practice, sustainability and innovation.
Last September there were a lot of Edinburgh schemes among the winners at the 2020 Awards.
Here is a quick look back at some of the developments in Edinburgh which were among last year’s winners.
If you want to take a deeper look into the details, the Planning Portal provides all the plans, drawings and related reports.
This category C listed 19th century building was once home to the famous North British Rubber Company and McEwan’s Fountain Brewery until its closure in 2005 after which the site lay vacant for over a decade. An application for Planning Permission was submitted in July 2015 to convert the C Listed former offices into a creative hub for the Edinburgh Printmakers.
The site, within the Fountainbridge Development Brief was identified as being part of a wider strategy to re-establish a community with mixed uses and with the intention of safeguarding and reusing the few remaining heritage assets.
This project was led by a small voluntary community organisation which came together to work towards the renovation of the farmhouse for community ownership. The conversion was from a vacant farmhouse into a cafe and kitchen with a teaching area on the ground floor. On the first floor an exhibition area and meeting space was formed.
The land to the rear of the farmhouse was split into two areas. Firstly the garden area was retained providing space for a kitchen garden and outdoor workshops. Secondly the rear courtyard area was hard landscaped with a paved terrace next to the farmhouse and a paved walkway along the front of the workshops.
A phase of 75 new homes for social and mid-market rent in Craigmillar. The masterplan was previously approved (Reference 05/01358/OUT)
The site is located on the east side of Greendykes Avenue (part of which was renamed Tudsbery Avenue) and is bounded by Greendykes Terrace (part of which was renamed Matthew Street) to the north, Greendykes Loan to the south and Greendykes Drive to the east. The site was previously housing which had been demolished.
Part of an important façade where Old Town meets New Town, the hotel sits right in the centre of Edinburgh at an entrance to Waverley Station. The restricted site had been undeveloped for over 50 years.
The Global Research Innovation and Discovery (GRID) teaching facility was designed specifically to promote collaboration between departments, and to create cohesion between academic disciplines, industry partners and the global community. It is focussed on subjects such as Engineering and Computer Science.
The building is the first in the Heriot Watt campus to engage its Lochside setting and offers access to the water’s edge via ramped terraces. Student well-being was designed into the project from the outset, influencing colours, materials & design.
A Non-Material Variation (NMV) application is a proposal to change an approved development that will not significantly alter what was granted planning permission.
Starting from 1 April 2021, we have introduced a new and streamlined way to apply for NMVs, with a new formalised Application Form and Customer Guidance for applying. It will allow us to process NMVs in a more efficient way.
NMV applications will now also be subject to a charge based on the scale of your development.
Developments which are primarily related to improving accessibility for people with disabilities are exempt.
A non-material variation essentially means that the proposed changes to a development will not significantly alter the scheme that was originally granted planning permission.
When considering a request for a non-material variation, planning officers will consider the cumulative impact of the proposed change alongside any other requests for non-material variations that have been made previously.
What permissions does a NMV relate to?
A non-material variation can only relate to a planning permission that has been granted. It is tied to the original planning permission and is not a new consent.
It is also important that you check and confirm any changes with Building Standards to ensure that any variations proposed in your NMV application still comply with the relevant Building Regulations.
Payments should be made online on our new NMV Payment Page – please note that we cannot accept payments over the phone or by cheque.
If an application for a NMV is successful, we will agree the variation in writing and a copy of the decision letter will be added to the planning portal. The drawings will then constitute the approved drawings for your planning permission. The original permission remains in effect but must be read in conjunction with the variations agreed under the NMV application.
As we enter into a new year with a vaccine gone into distribution, we would like to offer our best wishes to everyone for a better year ahead.
Whilst we look forward with optimism for a glimpse of normality, we would like to highlight the current circumstances of the service amid current lockdown restrictions.
Whilst a spring/summer lockdown of 2020 was challenging, the longer sunny days and warmth made the daily tasks of home working and home schooling seem bearable. Like many of you, we face these same tasks in the winter months, confined to our homes due to a dark, damp and cold climate, the challenges and strains have been intensified.
As a service, whilst continuing to offer the best customer experience that we can, current restrictions requires the continued closure of our offices and maintained remote working. Managers have recognised the extended challenges of this lockdown on all staff within the service from family life, care of vulnerable family and friends, childcare and home-schooling to those living alone, all in need of support. Consequently, the well-being and mental health of our staff within the service will continue to be prioritised. Approximately 40% of our staff have young children and dependants therefore, we expect elements of the service to experience delays as parents fulfil their daily duties however, we continue to do the best we can to minimise the disruption to the service.
Key elements of the service still continue and these include receiving, processing and assessing planning applications; City Plan 2030; planning enforcement; neighbour notifications; Planning helpdesk; DM sub-committee; and, the Local Review Body. Elements of the service that have been suspended include site visits, and site notices will be available online only. A small plea: if you are submitting an application, any contextual information including photos would be very helpful.
As a planning authority, we rely heavily on the input from colleagues within other services, agents/architects, consultants, stakeholders and communities. We recognise these same challenges will be faced by everyone. We offer our sincere understanding and continued willingness to work with you, optimising new forms of communication and alternative working arrangements.
We will continue to deliver the best possible planning service for our city however, given these challenging times and restrictive working environments, we ask for your continued patience and understanding for our staff.