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Viridor's waste transfer plans thrown out

Campaigners and councillors have thrown out plans for a controversial waste transfer station in Portobello, Edinburgh.

Waste company Viridor wanted to build the facility to move residual waste from lorries onto trains before being transferred to a landfill site in Dunbar.

But local residents campaigned vigorously against proposals for the site and were concerned about the proposed 200 lorries per day creating potential traffic problems. Councillors voiced their concerns at a planning committee meeting, citing potential problems over traffic, noise, disturbance, light pollution, smells and protecting a local conservation area.

Labour councillor Lesley Hinds told MRW: This decision was very controversial and received the largest number of objections I had seen in a very long time. Councillors voted 9-3 against the waste transfer centre and substantially rejected it.

We were not persuaded by the company (Viridor) that this site was right for that use. At the presentation they couldnt answer a lot of our questions, especially about the levels of traffic it would create.

Hinds also said that councillors were concerned about the aesthetics of the building and the height and mass of the building. She added: I have had over 300 e-mails of complaints about the proposals which is more than I have ever had about a planning application.

She said that councillors had to wait for the Scottish Governments new waste strategy, which is being put together as we speak, to look into a Lothian wide waste strategy and see what solutions that could provide for their waste disposal.

The proposed site was a former Frieghtliner rail terminal and has a direct rail line connection to the Dunbar landfill site.

A Viridor spokesman said: We are obviously disappointed that the committee has disregarded the advice of their own officers. The proposals were good for the city and good for our environment by reducing 40% of the carbon dioxide emissions from transporting Edinburghs waste. We will reflect on what our next steps should be, however, given the overwhelming planning case it is likely that we will be appealing against the decision.


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