Residents blame council apathy

Photo Emma Mitchell 12.07.16'Falcon Drive in Newton Mearns, residents not happy with the fence that is supposed to be sound proof.
Photo Emma Mitchell 12.07.16'Falcon Drive in Newton Mearns, residents not happy with the fence that is supposed to be sound proof.

More than a dozen residents of a Newton Mearns housing estate fear they’ve been abandoned to a lifetime of traffic noise from the M77.

An East Renfrewshire Council planning officer has written to local MP Kirsten Oswald saying he considers it will be “very difficult to achieve a solution” to the problem.

Developers of the new estate have installed a wooden garden fence which residents say is pointless and does nothing to lessen the noise of vehicles on the adjacent M77 which they claim is horrendous.

Residents say they were told during the sales process that plans included an acoustic barrier between the homes and the motorway.

Resident Rozlynn Brophy told The Extra: “We used to live near to the M74 in the south of Glasgow, but we were never affected by the noise of motorway traffic as much as we have been since moving in to our new home.

“Because of our previous experience, we asked about an acoustic barrier between our new home and the motorway, and were told this was addressed in the plans.

“It is clear this is not the case and the reality is that we have zero protection, with motorway noise at all times. During the day, the traffic noise is constant and even at night we hear regular convoys of lorries.

“When we contacted the council, instead of them taking responsibility, we were sent on a wild goose chase to Transport Scotland and the motorway operator, who both denied any responsibility.

“It is clear who is responsible for this situation and it is time Avant Homes and the council got together to sort this out.”

MP Ms Oswald said: “Residents on Newton Heights have been badly let down by both the developer and the council.

“I have written to the council chief executive, asking her to step in and direct relevant council departments to take action.”

A spokesman for Avant Homes said: “All work at the Newton Heights development was completed in accordance with the planning consent issued by East Renfrewshire Council, including the construction of the acoustic barrier along the site boundary adjacent to the M77.”

A council spokesperson said: “The construction of these homes so close to the motorway was refused by the councilbefore being approved on appeal by the Scottish Government. Fencing was installed to try to minimise the noise from the motorway.

“To provide further measures would require building a significantly larger barrier which would be detrimental to the residents in the area. We are happy to continue working with the residents and developer to try to identify a suitable solution.”