A hearing into a major development in a north-east town has been postponed.
Aberdeenshire Council had organised a pre-determination hearing for the Mains of Cowie project in Stonehaven tonight.
It would have allowed the developer, Stewart Milne Homes, to express its views to area councillors about its plan for 250 houses, a primary school, community facilities and a petrol station, before any decision is made.
However, the meeting has been put off to allow the housebuilding giant to “resolve issues” which have been raised in relation to the local transport network.
Kincardine and Mearns Area Manager, Willie Munro, said: “To hold the pre-determination hearing at this time would be inappropriate.
“There will be a delay in the determination process to allow the applicant to assess the implications of the matters raised by consultees in relation to transport and the road network.
“If the hearing were to go ahead, it would be with incomplete information and there would a significant period of time between the pre-determination hearing and the application being presented to the Kincardine and Mearns Area Committee, and then to council for determination.”
The hearing will be rescheduled, with new dates and times to follow.
The scheme has already been opposed by the local community council, who planned on laying out its objection tonight.
Vice-chairman of Stonehaven and District Community Council, Phil Mills-Bishop, said: “It’s the wrong mix and size of development in the wrong place.
“The Mains of Cowie Developers have not recognised the historical and archaeological significance of the ancient Cowie Mounth highway nor the destruction of the visuality of that entrance to the town.
“Moreover, there are practical concerns of even 250 new homes impinging on an already straining local services infrastructure, traffic congestion and indirect flooding of facilities on the land below it from the QE2 Caravan Park to the Recreation Park Bowling Greens.
“The community has constantly opposed this development over the years, but the developer does not seem to get the message and comes back time and time again taking up valuable time and planning resources with variations while at its core it is still the same development.”
Stewart Milne has said it “strongly believes” the project represents the town’s best opportunity for sustainable economic, and that the development reflects and responds “to the character of Stonehaven”.