CALLS have been made for a road which was closed after a child was killed on it to be reopened for a trial period to help ease traffic in Musselburgh.

The suggestion was made as East Lothian Council’s planning committee discussed concerns over the number of car parking spaces being built to serve a new 140-flat development next to the Tesco supermarket on Mall Avenue.

Councillor Norman Hampshire, acting council leader and planning convenor, said issues raised about the impact of traffic on surrounding streets would be addressed once the housing was in place.

Referring to Inveresk Road, which has bollards sealing off the exit at its west end, he said: “If we could have a trial of that as a one-way system it could make a major impact to the movement of traffic.”

He added: “That will have to be done with consultation of people in Musselburgh.”

The suggestion, however, brought a shocked response from ward councillor Stuart Currie, who asked: “Do you mean the road where a schoolchild was killed?”

Earlier, planning officials told the committee that when developers were first given planning permission for the flats at the former Brunton Wire Works in 2008, the current policy of demanding 150 per cent car parking spaces were provided on developments had not been in place and so could not be enforced now.

Developers plan to build only 146 spaces for the 140-home development and officials suggested that the Tesco car park, which neighbours the planned flats, would act as an “overflow car park”, along with a council car park on the other side of Mall Avenue.

However, this idea was criticised by Mr Currie, who said that people were notorious for not wanting to walk any distances to their homes and would simply park on Inveresk Road and create more congestion.

He said: “This is an important development which has taken a long time but the concern I have is about the car parking.

“I find it incredible to believe that 140 flats are only going to have 146 cars.

“I won’t support this application because I do not think it is realistic in terms of our policy and the designation of car parking.”

Fellow SNP Councillor Kenny McLeod questioned the suggestion by officials that Tesco would be happy for residents of the development and visitors to use their car park for store customers.

He said: “It is a bit of a cheek assuming we are going to be using their car park when they can put restrictions on it.”

The committee was asked to approve detailed conditions for the new development, including the number of car parking spaces, which went against their policy.

Lothian Buses objected to the development, saying that one block of flat in particular was “too close” to their depot.

They voiced concerns of future problems with new residents who would face “unacceptable” levels of noise from the depot if they opened their windows.

They said: “Musselburgh bus depot is indentified as a safeguarded transport facility in the emerging Local Development Plan.

“It is an essential local public transport facility.

“The proposed development has the potential to impact on the operations of this depot once the residential units are occupied.”

Councillor Andy Forrest, ward member for Musselburgh, said that he would support the development, saying he believed the developers would have done their homework on the need for parking at the site.

The plans were approved by an 8-1 vote.