- 16 Feb 2021
Date received: 21 Oct 2020
Date responded: 10 Nov 2020
In relation to planning application no's 19/00243/PPP and 18/00830/PPP for "information that Transport Scotland and its agents, consultants and contractors hold in respect of these two Stirling Council Planning applications: This to include all communications between Transport Scotland, its agents and contractors and Stirling Council and their agents and contractors and the applicants and their agents. We also require sight of all communications with Perth and Kinross Council and their agents and contractors on these two applications.
We require copies of all Transport Scotland’s analysis of the safety implications of this proposal, but particularly the risk assessments of the proposed pedestrian crossing, the increased risks of U turns and to understand the increased number of road closures that you have assessed will arise from this development.
We would like wish to see your assessment of the implications of the additional turning on and off the A9 and the assessment that defined a “destination” as included in published correspondence."
In your email of 20 October you further clarified that the date range for the correspondence you were interested in was 1 January 2018 to 20 October 2020.
As the information you have requested is 'environmental information' for the purposes of the Environmental Information (Scotland) Regulations 2004 (EIRs), we are required to deal with your request under those Regulations. We are applying the exemption at section 39(2) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002 (FOISA), so that we do not also have to deal with your request under FOISA.
This exemption is subject to the 'public interest test'. Therefore, taking account of all the circumstances of this case, we have considered if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption. We have found that, on balance, the public interest lies in favour of upholding the exemption, because there is no public interest in dealing with the same request under two different regimes. This is essentially a technical point and has no material effect on the outcome of your request.
Please see Annex A to this response for copies of all correspondence and minutes held in relation to planning applications 19/00243/PPP and 18/00830/PPP for the date range requested. An exception under regulation 11(2) of the EIRs (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in Article 5(1) of the General Data Protection Regulation and in section 34(1) of the Data Protection Act 2018. This exception is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exception.
While our aim is to provide information whenever possible, in this instance Transport Scotland does not have some of the information you have requested. Therefore we are refusing your request under the exception at regulation 10(4)(a) of the EIRs. The reason for this is it is not Transport Scotland’s role in the planning process to undertake any analysis/assessment of our own when determining a response to a planning application. Transport Scotland determine the safety impact of a potential development based on the information supplied by the applicant and their agents, and our discussions around these issues has been provided within the response to this EIR. Any detailed design and road safety consideration of the access or crossing are the responsibility of the applicant.
Any works proposed on the trunk road network cannot proceed without Transport Scotland’s approval, and further assessment work by the developers consultant will be required to demonstrate that an access can be provided safely and in line with current standards. The applicant must follow a standard process to agree the detail of any proposed changes to the trunk road network (junction and pedestrian facilities), and this will require that stage 1 and 2 road safety audits are completed, and all findings from the independent road safety audits suitably addressed.
The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at http://www.gov.scot/foi-responses.
Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000
The Scottish Government
St Andrews House