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St Andrews Bay Development (Kingask)
Issues raised during turbulent planning phase
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Fears of 'strangulation' due to traffic pressure

Gordon Berry, The Courier, 7 April 1999

Major traffic problems encountered in St Andrews during the first busy weekend of the visitor season has emphasised the “strangulation” which could come with major new golf and leisure development.

This was claimed yesterday as members of the town’s community council and preservation trust were quick to react to reports that junctions in the town became snarled up in Easter traffic which caused tailbacks and delays.

The situation arose as three applications for huge developments around the town at Feddinch, Kingask, and Scooniehill make their way through the planning process of Fife Council. All three applications are to be taken out of the hands of locally elected councillors, and decided at a meeting of the council’s central strategic development committee.

It was confirmed yesterday, that it is still possible that moves might be made by St Andrews bodies to request the Scottish Office to use its powers to ‘call-in’ the Kingask application for determination by the Secretary of State because of unhappiness over the way it has been handled.

On the question of weekend congestion leading community councillor Dr Frank Riddell said there had been a lot more traffic in the town with the Easter holiday.

“The areas where problems arose are similar to those identified recently when the preservation trust mounted a demonstration to show the effect of limited amount of extra traffic on the town centre.

“What has happened over the Easter break is nothing to what we will see if these developments go ahead.

“We would be talking strangulation. At Feddinch the effect of 600 holiday units would be to create a small town. From Easter right through until the end of the summer the results of that would be appalling.”

Dr Riddell said that in the case of Kingask the site was on the wrong side of the site from the major parking. Any traffic coming into town from Kingask would have to come back through the town centre to reach the parking areas.

Yesterday the chairman of the town’s preservation trust, Dorothea Morrison, said that there had been traffic problems in the town for the whole weekend.

“We had the familiar St Andrews haar, and although Easter might have been quieter than normal, people were still flocking into town. These were not golf related visitors, they were just normal people out for a day or weekend trip, and wanting to see and enjoy our historic mediaeval city.

“I was on duty at the museum and people were saying that if they could not get moving in the town they just wouldn’t bother coming back. This is a real threat, and not something we have imagined. We live here and monitor the situation all the time,” she said.

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