On the road to 57 new homes in the Borders as safety concerns are addressed

A new 57-homes housing development in a Berwickshire village passed its final hurdle today – after overcoming road safety concerns.

By Paul Kelly
Tuesday, 7th December 2021, 1:05 pm
How the Chirnside development will look.
How the Chirnside development will look.

Scottish Borders Council granted planning approval for Elgin-based Springfield Properties to build the affordable homes at Main Street in Chirnside back in October 2019.

Today, Tuesday, December 7, members of the council’s executive committee were asked to give road construction consent associated with the development.

That consent application had generated 28 objections from the local community. Opposition centred on a proposed new roadway on land formerly occupied by Steels Garage. Objectors expressed concern that the removal of a large section of pavement on the north side of the street would “make it unsafe for pedestrians, wheelchair users and parents with prams.”

One objector said: “The main street is already very busy and congested, there is a danger if the new roadway was allowed, more than 100 new cars could be using this stretch of road, making it dangerous and unsafe for local residents.”

But a report before the committee said that ‘robust’ measures were in place meet concerns.

The report said: “It is the opinion of the Roads Planning Service that Main Street, even with the presence of on-street parking, will cater for the increase in traffic

associated with both the current phase of development and the potential future extension should it be forthcoming. The capacity of Main Street is of such a level that the vehicles generated by both the proposed and potential future development will not have a detrimental impact.”

Kelso councillor Tom Weatherston said: “While I respect the objectors’ views, as I always do, I often think the positives outweigh the negatives. That there will be 57 new affordable homes in the village is absolutely fantastic.”

Council leader and councillor for mid-Berwickshire Mark Rowley, concurred, adding: “I think that 57 new homes in a village like Chirnside is probably going to help local business, community groups and help the high street thrive.”