A housing firm has been given the go-ahead to make changes at an historic Aberdeen mansion – so long as trees are protected.
Kirkwood Homes asked Aberdeen City Council last August for permission to build a new access point and driveway as well as a two-storey detached garage at the C-listed Inchgarth House in Garthdee – a 19th Century mansion built for a victorious war general.
Council officers turned down permission amid concerns the driveway would have a “significant, detrimental impact on, and loss of, mature trees on the site” – as it falls within Pitfoldels Conservation Area and on green belt land.
They also said the garage was too big and not in an appropriate position,
Kirkwood Homes went back to the drawing board and tabled a new plan, which has now been approved.
It means a two-storey detached garage and an access route can be built at the mansion and landscaping can be added, including the planting of trees.
Explaining the decision, the council’s planning officer Sepideh Hajisoltani said in a report: “The proposed design, scale, siting and materials of the proposed garage are acceptable.
“The proposal would not have a significant negative impact on the character of the conservation area or its green belt location.
“Subject to conditions (being met), the proposal would sufficiently comply with (council policies).”
Before work can begin, the firm must demonstrate that all trees on the site will be protected during construction work.
It must also get the council’s approval for the landscaping features and show how it plans to maintain the landscape features for the next five years.
Last May, the council’s planning development management committee triggered enforcement action on the site after it emerged between 145 and 208 mature trees were cut down without permission.
Hazlehead, Queen’s Cross and Countesswells Councillor Martin Greig said: “This is a very sensitive area. The environment needs to be considered and a compromise has been needed for some time.
“It is welcoming that Kirkwood Homes has now reached a point where it can make that compromise with the council.”
Kirkwood Homes was unavailable for comment.
The property was built for ex-naval officer Lieutenant George Skene Taylor, who made his fortune in the Far East.
The house was put on the market in 2009 with a price tag of more than £1 million and the application is one of a series of proposals to alter the building and the land around it in the past few years.