Here we have a look at the latest planning news from Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire councils.
Our first round-up of 2022 comes following a festive period where hotels and pubs had their hopes for a return to normality dashed.
And we detail developments planned for two Aberdeen institutions as they aim to thrive despite the lingering threat of Covid.
Former art and drama classrooms at Fraserburgh Academy could soon be history
Firstly, we take a look at plans to transform a recently emptied building at Fraserburgh Academy.
Generations of Brochers were taught art and drama in the annex across from the school.
Aberdeenshire Council has now formed proposals to turn it into 16 affordable one-bedroom flats.
The scheme has already been backed by the local authority’s housing department, who say it will “assist those in housing need on Aberdeenshire Council’s waiting list”.
The Dennyduff Road annex was vacated as part of a £2 million upgrade to the school.
Pupils and teachers used to have to walk five minutes to the old building.
Cafe’s outdoor seating plans hit roadblock
Meanwhile, the Red Robin record shop and cafe on Correction Wynd has been dealt a blow by council planning chiefs.
Owners wanted permission to place three “seating pods” on the road outside the Aberdeen venue for five years.
The local authority determined that the change would have “a detrimental impact on the character and appearance of the Union Street Conservation Area”.
They also said the pods would “obstruct driver visibility”.
Our map shows the Aberdeen city centre conservation area:
Home to be turned into new B&B in Cruden Bay
A Cruden Bay woman is looking to make the most of her spacious home by letting rooms out on a bed and breakfast basis.
The owner of Meadowbank, near the Kilmarnock Arms Hotel on Bridge Street, wants to use three of the four rooms as guest accommodation.
Genny Dal Santo reckons the B&B business would occupy about 47% of the house, which she recently bought.
It was put on the market for £290,000 in January.
B&B is just one option for north-east visitors…
For tourists who fancy a more outdoorsy experience, though, plans have been put forward for a new glamping pod at Banff.
The owners of Honeyneuk Cottage at Bruntyards are behind the scheme.
Aaron Howe is asking Aberdeenshire Council to change the use of the land required for the project.
Peterculter flats proposal
Plans to bring more residents into the centre of Peterculter have been formed.
Bieldside-based developer Matnic Ltd wants to build a block of 14 flats at 244 North Deeside Road, along with a new shop.
The site on the western edge of the suburb, just off the A93 Aberdeen to Banchory road, is empty and has some “derelict” former workshops to the rear.
You can see how the new Peterculter flats would appear by scrolling back and forth on our image:
Architects say the proposals “represent significant investment in the Peterculter neighbourhood centre, which will deliver a range of benefits to the local area”.
The scheme would feature a shop on the ground floor along with six one-bedroom flats and eight with two bedrooms.
Marquee needed ‘to help business recover’
Finally, we have a look at how two hospitality businesses on Queens Road in Aberdeen are making adjustments following a torrid two years.
The Dutch Mill hotel and bar is asking for the council’s blessing to keep its outdoor marquee up for another three years.
Bosses say the temporary shelter has proven “very popular” since being erected to keep customers safe amid Covid restrictions.
And the planning application states: “The impact of the recent Covid-19 pandemic has had an overwhelmingly negative impact on the business.
“However the presence of the additional outdoor seating within the marquee has allowed the business to continue to operate through these extremely challenging times.
“Retaining the marquee will assist the business to continue the slow recovery from the negative impact of the pandemic.”
Chester Hotel changes approved
Finally, further along the road, the Chester Hotel has been given permission to make some changes designed to boost takings.
Plans for a new “quality over quantity” approach were tabled a few months ago.
In response to an “understandable downward shift” in business travellers since the pandemic struck, bosses wanted to transform 10 rooms into five suites.
At the time, general manager Stephen Gow says people travelling for leisure purposes since the easing of lockdown have increasingly fancied splashing out on the “most luxurious rooms”.
The council has now approved the changes planned for the listed building, which have also been passed by management at Historic Environment Scotland.
Use these links to see the plans for yourself:
Fraserburgh school changes here.
Red Robin cafe outdoor seating refused here.
Cruden Bay B&B here.
Banff glamping pods here.
Peterculter flats here.
Dutch Mill here.
Chester Hotel here.