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Fife ploughs on with housing plans despite local uproar

Fife Council is refusing to abandon plans to build more than 30,000 new houses in the region, despite outrage from local residents, national heritage watchdogs and environmental bodies.

The huge house-building programme, which hopes to provide a total of 30,930 new homes by 2026, has been laid out in the council’s revised development plan currently under consideration by the Scottish Parliament.

Fife's proposals have been fiercely opposed by residents in the region, who have concerns over the sheer scale of the plan, and, along with neighbouring councils and environmental agencies, fear it will destroy the countryside.

The council, however, has steadfastly defended its plans. Speaking to the Sunday Herald, councillor John Beare, chair of Fife’s planning committee, said: ‘We are committed to presenting a sustainable vision for economic growth, regeneration and protection of the diverse areas of Fife.

‘A robust structure plan, sound environmental policies and up-to-date local plans can help us achieve this.’

Fife council is proposing to build 12,680 new homes near Glenrothes and Kirkcaldy, 12,150 around Dunfermline, 3,850 in St Andrews and 2,250 in Cupar.

Niall Corbet, of watchdog Scottish National Heritage, said: ‘The plan gave undue weight to economic considerations at the expense of environmental concerns.

‘The location of the strategic development areas was determined without due consideration of environmental constraints and failed to properly address issues such as designated sites, biodiversity, flood risk and sensitive landscapes.’

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