Councillors have refused to grant planning permission in principle for the creation of a business park at Nether Aden on the outskirts of Mintlaw.
The unanimous decision was taken by councillors during a recent meeting of the Buchan Area Committee at Arbuthnot House.
Aberdeenshire Council officers recommended that planning permission in principal for the proposed development comprising residential, business, community and commercial uses be refused.
Council planning officer Mr Murison told the committee that the absence of a masterplan meant officers were unable to support the application.
Commenting at the meeting, Central Buchan councillor Jim Ingram said the four-year period the application had been sitting was an unreasonable length of time.
Cllr Ingram also reiterated the need for more industrial units in the area but agreed that the proposed development required a master plan.
The Aberdeenshire Council roads department added their concerns over the road layout which would be needed for the scheme due to the lack of a master plan.
Commenting after the meeting, Councillor Norman Smith said: “We would like to see everything progressing as quickly as possible but there is due process to go through.
“There is a need and as we move forward there could be a greater need, so the developers should progress the master plan as quickly as they can and that will let the planners move on with their job.”
Speaking after the meeting, Councillor Jim Ingram added: “The thing that troubles me most is the time it’s taken to get a master plan, which has caused a delay.
“We need business units, not just in Mintlaw but in the wider Central Buchan area. But we need a master plan so we can plan for roads, sewerage and all the services.”