The dispute over the proposed housing development at Burghmuir took an unexpected turn of events as the Scottish government will decide the fate of the project.
Wallace Land and Investment Management lodged an appeal with the Scottish Government in February 2014 after their application to build 200 homes, access roads and associated infrastructure at Burghmuir was rejected by West Lothian Council.
Instead of being decided by a reporter, the appeal to the Scottish Government will now been handed over to ministers.
This direction was stated to have been taken because housing developments, particularly in growth areas are considered to be “an issue of national significance” by ministers.
The announcement of the measure coincides with the release of statistics which show that between July and September 2014, the highest quarterly number of local housing developments were processed, and more quickly than ever before.
Planning minister Alex Neil said: “Effective planning is crucial to promoting strong, sustainable economic growth.
‘‘We need to facilitate new developments and invest in modern infrastructure, while maintaining and creating great places to live and work.’’