Gavin Strang today warned Edinburgh Council about its plan to downsize Meadowbank Stadium.
He was speaking at a Public Inquiry into the Edinburgh Local Plan. The Edinburgh East MP, whose constituency covers the international sports centre, said: “I have never come across a planning issue that has aroused such massive public opposition.
“It’s not just about now. It’s about future generations. Meadowbank is very central, a key asset. It would be such an appalling blunder to downsize the facility.”
Over 1600 objections were lodged with Edinburgh Council about Meadowbank, more than the number of objections for all other parts of the Local Plan combined.
Inquiry reporters Dan Jackman and Richard Bowden heard accusations that the Local Plan as proposed was misleading because it made no mention of the plan to build houses on a significant part of the Meadowbank site. And there were complaints about how the Inquiry had been conducted with several objectors denied the chance to attend the hearing. Craigentinny/Meadowbank Community Council also complained about being omitted from the list of respondents.
Council officials explained decisions on Meadowbank are being made as part of a completely separate process.
The Inquiry considered three options: to completely remove Meadowbank from the Local Plan; to change it to read “the entire site should be retained for sports use”; or to expand it to include a fuller and updated explanation of the Council’s plan. The objectors preferred the second option, while Council officials wanted the third.
The hearing was then adjourned. A further exchange of correspondence will take place before Christmas. The Inquriry Reporters will publish their conclusions around the middle of next year.