Working it out together

Innovative approaches to planning

Aberdeen City Planning Performance Framework Case Study: Middlefield Regeneration Project


The Middlefield Regeneration project is an 80-unit development of affordable housing in an area of socio-economic deprivation. The project also included flood alleviation, wildlife, amenity, access and active travel improvements and new social infrastructure.

Who was involved?

Key agencies and other staff at the local authority.

What did they do?

The Aberdeenshire Local Development Plan had set the planning context for the development, with the Housing Service drafting the brief for the development, which is connected to the district heating network. ‘Hypostyle’ developed the architectural design and the Planning Services Environmental Policy and Development management Teams developed the final proposals.

Due to Scottish Water being unable to accommodate surface water run-off from the new development a potential solution was found through a council owned culverted burn. The Councils Flooding Team created an enhanced flood alleviation scheme by de-culverting the burn and creating flood retention basins for times of extreme weather conditions.

The Communities Team undertook extensive community engagement to make sure local people had input in the plans and the Councils Environmental Services team hired a Ranger to help connect local people to their new greenspace.


This development took a holistic approach to several local challenges through collaboration and interdisciplinary working leading to: 80 affordable homes; the Scatterburn being de-culverted; outdoor access and sustainable travel routes; Friends of Group has been established; and additional improvement initiatives have since followed.

Contribution to planning

Demonstrates how early intervention, innovative thinking, interdisciplinary collaboration and cross-service working can create a development that meets multiple objectives.

Awarded the Secured by Design Gold Standard by Police Scotland and an internal Council STAR Award for Efficient Use of Resources.

For more information:

Planning Performance Framework page 16-17:

Key themes: decision making; early collaboration; corporate working across the service; environment; affordable housing; greenspace; regeneration