Two 4G outdoor pitches for community use. The other pitches are for use by the club. Note these are football pitches, not pitches for other sports.[/caption] Let’s have a look at the ‘community pavilion’ then. So it is divided in two parts, the left hand side is the community part, then there is a secure door, beyond which are the club’s facilities. Note the only real space for community use is the dining room/multi use room. Presumably, this will be full of tables and chairs for eating, so not so great for doing other sporting activities in. There are some changing rooms for players using the 4G pitches. The Gym is beyond the secure door in the professional part of the pavilion. Not very publicly accessible then. So, the ‘community sports’, which have been so hyped by the club, are actually really nothing more than two 4G football pitches and a dining room. This is NOT a community stadium, it is a commercial enterprise. Access to these pitches will be controlled by the AFC Community Trust and will not just be available for a kick about. The club will most likely be charging for community use of these facilities, at an unspecified cost, and access arrangements have not been made clear. The youth academy will be using the ‘community’ pitches every weekday evening between 4-7.30 pm. So during this time they will not be available for other use. The lack of community facilities has also been highlighted by a recent report from Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire Council planners, who say: “It would appear that the proposal is for a football stadium rather than a community stadium as envisaged at the time of the preparation of the Strategic Development Plan (SDP) (and previous structure plan) which identified potential stadium locations (SDP para 3.24) as a component of a broader mixed community. While it is recognised that there will be community access to some of the football facilities, the uses proposed are not integrated in a sustainable fashion into the community given the scale of the development and its proximity to established or planned developments.” The Community Trust does some great work but their work is almost all outreach, so they can really be based anywhere and would really be better being located nearer to the communities which they serve, not 8 miles out of the city centre. Don’t be fooled by the slick sales patter of AFC. They are not offering much in the way of benefits to the community, and the costs to the community in terms of disruption, with traffic, noise, parking, etc. will be immense.
You can still object to these proposals.
The deadline for objections is this Monday, the 27th February.
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