Plans lodged to transform derelict A90 filling station into garden centre

Plans have been lodged to transform a derelict petrol station off of the North-East’s busiest road into a stylish garden centre.

Drumoak-based developer, McDonald Properties, has proposed breathing new life into the abandoned filling station neighbouring the A90 Aberdeen to Stonehaven road at Hillside, Portlethen. Planning permission in principle is being sought from Aberdeenshire Council for a two-storey garden centre complete with a restaurant at the prominent brownfield site.

The proposals are for a design featuring a curved “eco-roof” to blend into the surroundings of the local area.

The developer is arguing that, despite the location being within green belt land, the garden centre will create local jobs and regenerate the area. Since its closure nine years ago, the filling station has deteriorated and was described last night as an “eyesore”.

In a design statement on the plans by agents for the developer, Lippe Architects and Planners, the firm said it intends to create “an iconic building” and not a “shed”. It adds: “Clearly there has been no interest in the site being taken forward as a petrol filling station. The proposed curved green roof will create an aesthetically pleasing profile that will blend into the existing visual landscape providing the existing residential properties on the other side of the A90 with a natural, green and pleasant outlook. There is an appreciation that the site should not stay in its current derelict state for much longer. It has deteriorated in condition over the years and is a magnet for vandalism.

“This is not a positive image for the outskirts of Portlethen being so visible from the main road.”

Last night chairman of the Portlethen and District Community Council, Ron Sharp, said: “It has certainly got our support. The only thing we were a wee bit sceptical about was perhaps coming off the A90 and going back on again, and deceleration into the premises. We’d also liked to have seen some pedestrian link between there and the town, to make it easier to get to it. The plans look pretty impressive. We’d welcome it with open arms. It would be nice to see it (the filling station) taken up and something being done with it. It is an eyesore.”

The car park at the garden centre would have space for 96 vehicles.

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