Withdrawal of west Edinburgh planning framework: Chief Planner letter

West Edinburgh planning framework is being withdrawn.

  1. I am writing to you as someone who (or whose organisation) responded to the consultation draft West Edinburgh Planning Framework in 2006. Those comments helped shape the content of the published West Edinburgh Planning Framework 2008. As you may be aware the 2008 version replaced the 2003 West Edinburgh Planning Framework.

  2. The West Edinburgh Planning Framework has for the past eleven years provided a strategic steer to key land uses in West Edinburgh. Latterly it has focused on enabling the growth potential of Edinburgh Airport to be accommodated in principle, whilst identifying land for a re-located National Showground Centre within the area, as well allowing for a new International Business Gateway to come forward. Furthermore, the West Edinburgh Planning Framework promoted improvement to the quality of West Edinburgh as a place.

  3. The clear intent of West Edinburgh Planning Framework was to ensure that the vision it set out should be drawn into Strategic and Local Development Plans to directly influence the location and quality of development.

  4. The significant potential of developments in West Edinburgh around the airport has been included in the South East Scotland Strategic Development Plan (SESPlan), in alterations to the Rural West Edinburgh Local Plan, and in the emerging Local Development Plan (the second version of which is available from the City of Edinburgh Council for public consultation until 3 October 2014). In addition the City of Edinburgh Council has published a Strategic Design Framework for the area to guide the form development should take. The Edinburgh International Development Partnership (Formerly West Edinburgh Development Partnership), tasked with delivering development as set out by West Edinburgh Planning Framework, has produced an implementation plan for the area. 

  5. On 23rd June 2014 the Scottish Government published National Planning Framework 3. It is a legal requirement that Strategic and Local Development Plans take account of the National Planning Framework in their preparation. National Planning Framework 3 highlights the area as a 'significant location for investment' and has included a national development on 'Strategic Airport Enhancements'. Through the national development and the policy text the three key economic land uses are supported. More generally, National Planning Framework 3 promotes the delivery of high quality, diverse and sustainable places.

  6. Between the National Planning Framework 3, SESPlan, the Local Plan and emerging Local Development Plan, Scottish Ministers have decided that the vision for the area has been well accommodated.

  7. These plans have responded to changes in the economy and guidance, such as the West Edinburgh Strategic Design Framework, itself the subject of public consultation, which have occurred since West Edinburgh Planning Framework was published.

  8. Scottish Ministers believe that the available and emerging suite of planning documents that address the area from the national, regional and local levels provide the appropriate and ambitious policy framework to deliver quality development.

  9. This being the case, West Edinburgh Planning Framework is no longer required and has been withdrawn today with immediate effect.

  10. The Scottish Government wishes to ensure that plans are up to date and relevant, withdrawing West Edinburgh Planning Framework allows those more recent plans that carry forward the vision for West Edinburgh to form the basis for decision making and investment in the area.

  11. The withdrawal of the West Edinburgh Planning Framework has been considered in regards of requirements for Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA). SEA screening has been undertaken and the Scottish Government does not consider that the withdrawal will result in significant environmental effects. Scottish Natural Heritage, Scottish Environment Protection Agency and Historic Scotland all confirm with this position. The screening opinion and agency responses to it can be seen on the Scottish Government's website:http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Environment/environmental-assessment/sea/SEAG No further environmental assessment on the withdrawal of West Edinburgh Planning Framework will be undertaken. A newspaper advert will be placed to announce the withdrawal of the West Edinburgh Planning Framework in accordance with SEA legislation.

  12. Further information on West Edinburgh can be found at:

National Planning Framework 3: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Built-Environment/planning/National-Planning-Framework

Rural West Edinburgh Local Plan Alteration: http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/20069/local_plans_and_guidelines/64/local_plans

Edinburgh Local Development Plan: http://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/info/20164/proposed_local_development_plan/1050/second_local_development_plan

Should you have any queries about the withdrawal of the West Edinburgh Planning Framework please contact Simon Bonsall: simon.bonsall@scotland.gsi.gov.uk.

Yours faithfully

John McNairney Chief Planner Planning and Architecture Division


Email: chief.planner@gov.scot

Telephone: 0131 244 7528

Area 2-H (South)
Planning and Architecture Division
The Scottish Government
Victoria Quay

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