Building Briefs - October 12th



  • Kincardine public discuss regeneration proposals

The community of Kincardine met last week to look at exciting plans designed to improve their Town and links to the surrounding area as part of ‘Imagine Kincardine’. These options were gathered from an earlier Charrette, a consultation with residents.

Working in partnership with the Coalfields Regeneration TrustSustrans and HarrisonStevens, Fife Council held this discussion event to showcase options and set priorities. The main aims of the project are to improve active travel connections and links within the town of Kincardine. To increase cycle and pedestrian use in the town by enhancing pedestrian space, providing designated cycle routes and safer streets and crossings.  And to increase footfall and encourage greater use of the High Street to stimulate investment in the town.

The planned changes would see an enhancement of the town environment and improve pedestrian and cyclists connections to refocus the emphasis from road user-led design to people led design.

The event was also able to showcase a number of other strategically exciting and important developments in and around the area. These included the New Health and Wellbeing centre, potential for a railway station, and the exciting potential for investment in the former Longannet Power Station by Talgo. Representatives were available to allow the community the opportunity for discussion.

 

  • Additional £3m investment in Aberdeenshire roads maintenance and repairs programme

Councillors have agreed an additional £3 million spend on roads maintenance across Aberdeenshire.

It follows an earlier £2.5m cash injection agreed during the Budget discussions in March of this year to address delays in repairs as a direct result of the Covid pandemic.

During discussion of the General Services Capital Performance at a recent Full Council meeting, Depute Leader and chair of the council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, Cllr Peter Argyle, said Covid and Scottish Government guidance during 2020 meant very little work was undertaken on the 3,500-mile road network except for safety-critical issues which were addressed.

Commending the work of the Roads Service during these very challenging circumstances, Cllr Argyle said: “It has been a particularly difficult time for roads and the service has worked exceptionally hard throughout the pandemic. There has been a huge amount of catch-up as a result of the pandemic on top of an unusually hard winter and actually indicates that going through a six-month delay on road repairs is not the course of action any of us would wish to see.

“In terms of investment, an additional £2.5 million was agreed in the Budget in March of this year together with a further £3 million from the Infrastructure Fund 2 now unanimously agreed by Full Council. Of course, like many other council services, we’ve experienced real challenges with the supply chain, recruitment – typically for lorry drivers – and there is very significant inflation in the construction sector and huge demand on public sector contracts as well – all of which makes life as difficult for us as a council as it is for the private sector.

“Some tenders have come back way over expectation, but equally many others have come back perfectly acceptable and have been taken ahead.

“We now have an agreed programme of works in place which will be carefully assessed and planned to make the most effective use of this additional investment. Using results from the national Road Maintenance Condition Survey repairs will be designed to best suit the overall condition of the road.  In some cases this will be a localised repair to the defect, such as a pothole, while in other instances where the overall road is in a poor condition the repair may take the form of a more widespread surface dressing, or indeed resurfacing operation.  Using this tailored approach ensures that the repairs undertaken achieve the best balance between cost and benefit.”

 

  • Shipbuilders sculpture work begins

Construction of a new 10-metre tall sculpture honouring Inverclyde’s shipbuilding heritage has commenced.

Work has started on the foundations for the giant ‘Shipbuilders of Port Glasgow’ statue, which will take pride of place in the town’s Coronation Park.

The sculpture of two stainless steel figures hard at work has been designed and built by renowned artist John McKenna following a public vote and consultation.

The artwork pays tribute to Port Glasgow and Inverclyde’s shipbuilding past.

When installed, the figures will measure 10 metres (33 feet) in height with a combined weight of 14 tonnes.

It is thought to be the largest sculptural figure of a shipbuilder in the UK and one of the biggest of its kind in Western Europe.

Work on the foundations will begin on Monday and is expected to be completed by the end of November, subject to weather conditions and material supplies. 

That will then pave the way for the installation of the sculptures themselves early next year.

 

  • Shepherd scores hat-trick at The Scottish Mortgage Awards

Shepherd Chartered Surveyors has been crowned ‘Surveyor of the Year’ at the Scottish Mortgage Awards for the third year in succession.

(from left) Graeme Stewart managing partner at Shepherd and Scott Robertson from award sponsor Standard Life Home Finance

Judged by independent and respected experts, The 2021 Scottish Mortgage Awards celebrate the people, products and services that demonstrate excellence and originality within the Scottish intermediary mortgage market.

The awards reflect the broad make-up of the property market in Scotland with nominations submitted by industry professionals which are independently checked and verified.

Shepherd managing partner Graeme Stewart said: “We are delighted to once again win such a prestigious award for the third year in a row.

“While we were up against strong competition, this award is testament to our staff’s hard work and dedication supporting the firm in their various roles across our Scotland-wide office network.

“The last year has not been easy, and while we continue to work in uncertain and challenging times, this award gives us all a welcome fillip in a competitive and uncertain market. No one can rival Shepherd’s office network alongside our full complement of lender panel appointments across Scotland.”