Maverston homes get council go-ahead
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PLANNING permission has been granted for 28 homes and a haul road in a rural setting near Urquhart.
Plans for the development at Maverston were given the green light during a meeting of Moray Council's planning and regulatory services committee yesterday.
As well as the homes – which lie to the northern edge of Mavertson Golf Course – a woodland play park is included in the application, which has been brought forward by Maverston LLP.
The houses will be built as the second phase in a larger development which already has outline approval, with construction of 12 houses already complete or underway.
Under the current application, the remaining 28 units have been condensed into a smaller area in the south east of the site.
A design statement for the proposal stated: "The proposal seeks to increase the development density from approximately 1.8 dwellings per hectare to 3 dwellings per hectare, dramatically improving the efficiency and saleability of the phase 2 plots.
"The plots are still of a scale that will allow for large, generous homes to be constructed within an environment that offers significantly more amenity and space than the majority of housing developments."
Committee members granted approval after a motion by Forres councillor Claire Feaver to refuse the application failed to achieve a seconder.
Cllr Feaver's concerns centred on the impact the temporary haul road would have on an area of ancient woodland at the site.
Speaking after the meeting, Cllr Feaver said: "These places are literally irreplaceable and shows that whenever there is a difficult choice to be made, the protection of biodiversity becomes a secondary consideration."
However, planning officers had recommended the application be approved and said the new layout would mean more ancient woodland would be retained than in previous approvals.
A committee report stated: "The impact on the natural environment has been fully assessed and appropriate mitigation is proposed.
"This proposal will safeguard an area of woodland where development was previously approved.
"It has been demonstrated that the development can be sited, designed and serviced in a manner that is in keeping with the surrounding development but without any unacceptable or significant adverse impact on the amenity of the surrounding area."