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Scotland round-up: Councils could take over empty buildings under new proposals; Community bid to reclaim part of Dumfries High Street

Words: Roger Milne

A round-up of planning news in Scotland: 14 April-20 April, 2018

Scottish councils could take over empty buildings under new proposals

The Scottish Land Commission says it is working on proposals for a new Compulsory Sale Order power.

The Planner

Action threatened over housing scheme because of impact on Edinburgh Zoo’s giant pandas

The Scottish Government has warned the City of Edinburgh Council that construction work associated with the redevelopment of a former mental hospital could disturb the capital’s two giant pandas on loan from China.

The Planner

Community bid to reclaim part of Dumfries High Street

A community benefit society has been established in Dumfries, with ambitious plans to take back control of its neglected town centre and become the first in Scotland to buy back part of its high street.

The Planner

Built environment build capacity ‘crucial’ to Commonwealth success

The RTPI is among a number of national and Commonwealth organisations to pledge to help build capacity in Commonwealth countries that are struggling with the impact of rapid urbanisation.

The Planner

Government puts up money for global climate challenge

UK Government ministers have announced that more than £8 million will be invested in British technology in an attempt to help Commonwealth countries reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prepare for natural disasters.

The Planner

Dyce housing

Proposals are in the pipeline to develop more than 300 affordable homes on a vacant site in Dyce near Aberdeen Airport.

Scottish Housing News

Bigger Spean Bridge pumped storage project in prospect?

Energy company SSE has confirmed that it is seeking permission from the government to more than double the capacity of its originally planned 600 megawatt Coire Glas pumped storage hydro-electric project at Spean Bridge.

BBC News

Historic Scotland under threat?

Scotland’s historic buildings, landscapes and traditions are in danger of being ignored in a new national cultural strategy, according to the National Trust for Scotland.

Glasgow Herald

Heritage numbers up

More than five million people have visited Scotland’s heritage attractions in a single year, with a new record set by the country’s historic properties managed by Historic Environment Scotland.

Edinburgh Evening News

Turbines not so bad for sea birds

The risk of seabirds colliding with offshore wind turbines is less than half what was previously thought, according to a landmark new industry report based on the most comprehensive investigation into the impacts of offshore wind farms on seabird behaviour ever carried out.

The Scotsman

Action on polluted air urged

Leading medical charities have called for quicker and bolder action to tackle the thousands of deaths every year linked to polluted air.

The Scotsman

Glasgow office conversion mooted

Wellington House in Glasgow, has been put up for sale, with property agent Jones Lang LaSalle flagging potential for the office block to be converted into a hotel or residential development.

Glasgow Herald

Green light for Easter Ross housing

Highland councillors have approved plans for a 160-home development at Evanton in Easter Ross.

BBC News

Planning minister defends power sub-station call-in

A controversial decision to take control of a Chinese-backed bid to build a power station was not linked to Nicola Sturgeon’s visit to Beijing, insisted Scotland's planning minister.

The Scotsman

Listed Glasgow pillar box

A rare red post box on the southside of Glasgow has been given listed building status.

The Scotsman

Inverness sorting office move

Royal Mail is proposing to relocate its Inverness mail centre and delivery office to a new site in Seafield Road in a move costing over £6.6 million.

BBC News

Pentland Firth tidal stream milestone

The construction of the first phase of the world’s largest tidal stream array has been completed in the Pentland Firth off the Caithness coast.

BBC News

Diageo boosts whisky tourism in Edinburgh and elsewhere

Drinks giant Diageo has announced plans to build a state-of-the-art Johnnie Walker immersive visitor experience based in Edinburgh, as part of wider plans involving a £150 million investment in whisky tourism projects.


Piano amphitheatre plan

Plans have been revealed to build an amphitheatre made from 50 pianos in the capital in an initiative involving the Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.

Scottish Construction Now

Electrical vehicle fund flop?

FM Nicola Sturgeon’s aim for petrol and diesel-free motoring has been questioned after it emerged that a finance scheme to buy electric vehicles has been used just 500 times by ordinary motorists.

The Scotsman

Auld Reekie Airbnb earnings

A ‘typical’ Airbnb host in Edinburgh earns over £4,000, according to new data from the website.

Edinburgh Evening News

Fibre broadband progress

More than 95 per cent of Scotland’s homes and businesses are now able to connect to fibre broadband, it has emerged.

Scottish Government

Consolidated circular on non-domestic PDRs

The government has published a revised version of Circular 2/2015: Consolidated Circular on Non-Domestic Permitted Development Rights, which contains updated guidance on the changes to Class 67 permitted development rights made last year.

Scottish Government

Public interest-led development free seminar

The Scottish Land Commission has organised a free one-day seminar on public interest-led development, which will be held in Glasgow on 25 April.

Scottish Land Commission

Latest population statistics

For the eigth year running, Scotland’s ageing population has continued to increase and now stands at a record high of 5.42 million, according to statistics published by the National Records of Scotland.

Scottish Government

Edinburgh courthouse hotel conversion project

Plans have been submitted to transform a former Edinburgh courthouse and jail building into boutique pod-style hotel accommodation.

Edinburgh Evening News

Glasgow Grade A office development

M&G Real Estate has unveiled its plans for a new £100 million office development called The Grid on the site of the former Corunna House in Glasgow’s central business district which is planned to provide 25,780 square metres of grade A floorspace.

Scottish Construction Now