The proposal comprised 309 dwellings and 586m2 of commercial floor space. The developer proposed to provide 67 dwellings and 358m2 of commercial space on 14 floors in the mill and an adjoining building. The remainder would be in new buildings between three and eight storeys high.
Relying in part on advice from Architecture and Design Scotland (ADS), the council argued that the retained buildings would seem an isolated element of a former industrial complex and prevent the establishment of an appropriate new character for the site. The appellants claimed that the retained buildings had historic value even though they were not statutorily protected and pointed out that Historic Scotland supported the scheme.
The reporter agreed that the mill and adjoining building were very large and historically interesting. However, he remarked that the mill would be much taller than the new buildings and considered that its retention would result in a rather unsatisfactory compromise. He placed more weight on ADS's advice because this positioned the scheme in the overall context of the waterfront redevelopment. In addition, he was concerned that insufficient on-site parking would lead to use of a shoppers' car park, jeopardising town centre vitality and viability.
DCS Number 100-050-850
Inspector David Gordon; Inquiry.