Page last updated at 18:09 GMT, Monday, 15 December 2008

Munitions site plan gets go ahead

Construction workers
The plans would see the creation of 2,500 homes in Bishopton

Proposals to redevelop one of Europe's largest brown field sites have been given the green light by Renfrewshire Council despite local objections.

More than 2,000 complaints were lodged against plans by BAE Systems and Redrow Homes to transform the former Royal Ordnance factory at Bishopton,

It followed concerns over contamination at the former munitions site.

But outline planning consent was granted after an independent report found insufficient cause for concern.

Councillors voted in favour of proposals which will see the creation of 2,500 homes, a business park, community woodland park and community facilities.

Detailed planning consent was also given for a related motorway junction off the A8/M8.

Decontamination assurance

Councillor Iain Nicolson, convenor of Renfrewshire Council's planning and economic development policy board, said further detailed planning applications still had to be considered.

He said: "However, if all the stringent conditions that we will apply are fulfilled, this development has the potential to significantly boost the local and regional economy, provide housing for people who want to live in the area, deal with remediation of contaminated land and act as a driver for business growth."

The proposed development at the former munitions site has been the subject of debate for several years.

In 2006 the Scottish Executive enacted rarely-used powers to order a review of plans, focusing on contamination issues and the development's impact.

Mr Nicolson said: "The planning process has a specific remit to address decontamination and remediation issues. I can assure the community of Bishopton that all the statutory bodies involved will ensure that all works carried out on the site are fully monitored by the relevant agency."

The site at Bishopton is identified as one suitable for residential and business development in the Glasgow and Clyde Valley Joint Structure Plan.

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