I felt as though I had unwittingly dragged a Trojan horse into the house, as all the niceness with regard Deveron slipped out over the table as I opened it. Inside are three written sheets, plus one of plans (.pdf file if you have not seen it)
Deveron are a very kind company, proposing over £100 million of investment into the local area. Presumably this includes the land purchase, building costs, and sale value of the housing.
The creation of 500 jobs I suspect will depend on all the units on the proposed industrial estate being let or sold, and new businesses moving to the area. New Industrial parks usually attract grant monies to be built, so this is not a move out of the goodness of their hearts. Does Nairn really need yet another Industrial site? We already have the Balmakeith and Granny Barbour’s. They are hardly tourist friendly attractions to the town.
Deveron tie needs together. Meeting the shortage (Have they seen the long lists of housing for sale at Solicitors recently?) of family housing, is in the same breath linked to affordable housing. According to a later sentence, the number of ‘affordable’ homes for sale will be just 34 out of 138 the rest will be rented. Not an impressive figure.
In trying to tick our ‘right on’ boxes we are informed that there will be provision of low energy homes. All new builds have to meet certain standards of insulation, and therefore hopefully use less energy to heat than older buildings.
Their ecological wetlands is that already – just leave it alone
The whole tone of the letter is that Deveron are really doing Nairnites a big favour in building here, heck they are even prepared to scale down some of their high-rise flats from 4 to 3 stories.
What is not mentioned is the density of the estate, with little space for each dwelling.
Working on rough figures, 500 new homes with an average of two residents (Family homes will have more) is equal to 1000 people, this equates to an increase in the Nairn population by 10%.
I wonder what work has been put in to scale up our already over stretched services to accommodate such a rise in demand?
Another 500+ cars are going to be competing for space on the A96 and the High street.
Nairn has suffered many times before at the hands of developers. At a time when many residents have identified (Iain Fairweather for one) a need for a real plan to include all-important tourism, I cannot see the Deveron plan offering anything towards that.
Tourists entering Nairn from the west will be confronted with a modern development that they could see anywhere in the country. It reflects nothing of Nairn, only a developer trying to make as much money as possible.
I’m not against change, and can see the need for development, but I can see this is going to become a very large sore thumb on the Nairn landscape.