Green light for Chapelpark housing project

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Councillors have given the go-ahead for a £4.7 million housing project that will provide 29 new affordable homes in Forfar.

The scheme will also bring back into use the former Chapelpark School which has been standing empty since 2009, when it closed its doors as part of Angus Council’s schools replacement project.

At the authority’s recent Communities Committee meeting, members heard how the original funding to convert the existing Chapelpark Primary School to 30 flats has been revised to 25 flats and four new-build terraced houses.

The Forfar homes will comprise 18 one-bedroom flats, six two-bedroom flats, one three-bedroom flat and four four-bedroom new-build terraced houses.

Of those, 16 will be developed in the main building with nine flats on the site of a former school annexe building.

Donald Morrison, council housing spokesman, said that the change of plans had been necessary and that the project is still “tremendous news” for Forfar.

He said: “While this move has reduced the number of homes initially proposed, the change was necessary to meet the current anticipated housing demand and the fact that houses take up extra space than flats.

“This is tremendous news for Forfar, as there is high demand for good quality, affordable rented accommodation.

“As part of the council’s commitment to delivering affordable homes and reduce carbon dioxide emissions the homes have high levels of insulation - which exceeds current building regulations, installation in external walls, double glazed windows and high efficiency boilers.

“Our emphasis on energy efficiency will ensure tenants have low fuel costs in the years to come which is good news for them as well as for the environment.

“The construction works at the former, should it get planning, will hopefully be a welcome boom for the local economy while these works take place.”

As part of the Scottish Government’s affordable housing programme, Angus Council has received grant funding of £1,305,000 to assist in meeting the council’s Affordable Housing Supply Programme with the remaining £3.7 million being funded by Angus Council.

Construction on the scheme could begin in December next year, with completion by March 2017.