A DECISION on controversial plans to build a 230ft high chimney in Glasgow is on hold.

Residents packed into a planning committee meeting yesterday to find out the outcome on proposals for a high rise waste recycling plant in the West End.

But, despite planners’ recommending approval, the meeting lasted less than five minutes after councillors voted for a hearing.

As the Evening Times reported on Saturday, nearly 1000 objections to the construction, described as an ‘energy-from-waste’ plant, were lodged.

Concerns have been raised about the proposals by WH Malcolm, over pollution, increased traffic in the area, the height of the chimney and the impact it could have on local people’s health.

The plant, which would be built on an existing facility at South Street in Scotstoun, would use ‘gasification’ on waste to generate power and heat.

Councillor Liz Cameron requested the hearing because she said issues were still unclear.

She said: “There seems to be a feeling this is an incinerator - I don’t think it is that but we need to have this discussion.”

It came after a protest by opponents to the scheme took place outside the City Chambers.

A small group of people gathered in George Square carrying placards saying: ‘Air pollution is not the solution’ and ‘don’t burn our future’.

Christy Mearns, a Greens candidate for the 2017 council elections, said: “I am very glad a hearing’s been granted and no decision was made.

“That was the only option suitable at this time. I am hoping we have a chance to speak to the developers about the issues that people are worried about it and it also gives the developers a chance to put across their point of view.”

Ms Mearns said there was a level of distrust in the community because they believe they have not been consulted.

She said: “Although SEPA has given the green light, I think people are very concerned about the level of pollution in the Dumbarton Road area, which is already above EU standards.

“The level of traffic will be quite colossal. All this could potentially rule out any positive effect of the energy plant.

“People also feel the site has not been well considered, they think it’s just been chosen because there’s already a waste facility there.”

Local resident Jill Ferguson said: “I’m absolutely against this development because it will increase pollution and traffic.

“I don’t feel there’s been any consultation and it’s not right for the area.”

Partick West councillor Feargal Dalton added: “The other problem is residents didn’t know this was coming up for business.

“It has been difficult for people to find out anything about it.”

A spokesman for WH Malcolm, welcomed the decision to grant a hearing.

He said: “We look forward to presenting our case for the proposal at the hearing. As was recognised at the committee meeting, there is an element of misunderstanding about the proposed facility and the hearing will give us the opportunity to address this.

“The amount of waste being sent to landfill in Scotland needs to be tackled and upgrading this existing facility provides an opportunity assist with that aim.

“Council planning officers recommended that the facility is approved in their report to the committee, and recognised that it is firmly in line with Scottish Government planning and environmental policies. We look forward to reaffirming that case at the hearing.”