Building Briefs – March 10th

DSC_1611Funding boost means green light for £5m High Street library

Work to build a new £5 million library in an empty unit on Paisley’s High Street will start this year – in the latest stage of the push to use culture to breathe new life into Paisley’s High Street.

Renfrewshire Council had already made £3.5m available for the project – and the final piece of the funding jigsaw arrived today with confirmation of a £1.5m grant from the Scottish Government’s Regeneration Capital Grant Fund.

The project will see the existing Paisley Central Library relocated from its existing home adjoining Paisley Museum to the unit at 22 High Street, formerly the Internacionale store, to form a new learning and cultural centre.

The move is part of a wider effort by the council to use culture to transform the fortunes of the town centre, taking place alongside the UK City of Culture 2021 bid.

Work is already underway on a publicly-accessible museum store in a formerly-empty unit at 9 High Street, due to open later this year.

And plans are moving forward for a £49m revamp of Paisley Museum into an international-class destination based around Renfrewshire’s unique heritage, which would bring an estimated extra 125,000 visitors per year to the town centre.

The library project will involve a major refurbishment of the building and a new shopfront but will retain the historic façade on the upper levels, in keeping with the rest of the High Street.

The new facility would be managed by Renfrewshire Leisure Ltd and is planned to be open by the end of 2019.


BP scraps plans for new power plant at Grangemouth

A multi-million pound plan for a new power plant at Grangemouth has been scrapped by oil giant BP.

The firm had announced its intention to build a gas-fired Combined Heat and Power (CHP) plant at the Kinneil terminal, which would generate steam for the oil industry as well as electricity.

Scottish ministers granted planning consent for the project in March last year.

Construction of the plant would have led to the creation of around 400 temporary jobs.


Clydebank Leisure Centre keys handed over to council

Clydebank Leisure Centre 2West Dunbartonshire Council has taken the keys to the brand new £23.8 million Clydebank Leisure Centre which will open to the public this month.

hub West Scotland, the council’s development partner, and main contractor BAM are currently putting the finishing touches to the Queens Quay centre with the last remaining work being carried out to ensure the facility is ready to welcome local people for many years to come.

The new leisure centre – which will be operated by West Dunbartonshire Leisure Trust – includes three swimming pools, changing facilities, a café, multi-purpose sports hall with badminton, netball, basketball, and five-a-side football courts and retractable seating, fitness suite, and group exercise studio. It also plays host to Scotland’s first interactive flume ride.

The entire first floor of the centre is made up of a unique interactive activity zone and fitness area for children. It provides state-of-the-art adaptable facilities for young people to encourage active lifestyles. The very latest technology, including wall and floor projectors, is used to create two large activity areas and two large party rooms.

The new Clydebank Leisure Centre is on schedule to open to the public before the end of March.


Work to start on £3.2m project to revitalise Aberdeen street

Work is to start this month on a £3.2 million project which will transform and revitalise a city centre street into a pedestrian-priority area.

The work on Broad Street, which will improve the streetscape and create an area capable of staging events throughout the year, is part of the City Centre Masterplan.

Part of Broad Street is to close at 5am on Saturday 18 March, initially to allow building work at Marischal Square and thereafter delivery of the first shared-use space under the multi-million pound Masterplan which is a 25-year plan with 50 projects aimed at transforming the city centre.

The works are expected to take several months to complete and Broad Street will be closed to all traffic from Upperkirkgate to Queen Street. Local diversions will be signposted. After the work is finished, the new Broad Street will be pedestrian, cycle and bus only.

In addition, Broad Street from Union Street will remain open to allow access Queen Street, public and ACC staff will continue to have access into Marischal College, and there will always be pedestrian access and through route along Broad Street. Updates will be given as work progresses to public and ACC staff for access to all buildings on Queen Street.


Glasgow continues pothole blitz with separate pavements budget

Glasgow City Council has stepped up its pothole blitz to also include footpath resurfacing as part of an extra £13 million repair works investment.

Council leader Frank McAveety revealed for the second year in a row, the council has pumped more cash into roads and pavement improvements.

This year the council will spend £8m to target 12,000 potholes and a further £5m concentrating on pavement resurfacing. This takes the total additional spend over two years by the council to £29m for early interventions work designed to prevent roads and paths deterioration.

This latest cash boost will help resurface more than 81km of streets and 80km of pavements - while carrying out a city wide programme of permanent patch repairs.

In total Glasgow City Council has spent £97.5m over five years.


Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh set for makeover

Edinburgh’s historic Queen’s Hall has secured a £650,000 grant for building improvements, culture secretary Fiona Hyslop announced yesterday.

In 2017-18 the Scottish Government will provide £390,000 over two years with Historic Environment Scotland contributing £260,000.

Masonry, windows, doors and the roof will be renovated at the 194 year-old former Georgian Church, which is the performance home of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, one of Scotland’s five National Performing Companies.


Next stage for new community centre and nursery in Auchinairn

Auchinairn PlaceEast Dunbartonshire Council is moving forward to the next stage of delivering its Place agenda in Auchinairn.

Subject to council approval, the building of a new community centre and nursery can now be progressed to financial close, after planning permission was granted for the project.

The new community facility will be built on the site of Auchinairn Primary School in Beech Road, Bishopbriggs and will be a single storey mixed use building for community facilities and nursery, playground, café, car parking and landscaping.


Extra £1m capital for Highland roads

The Highland Council has approved £1 million of additional capital monies to be spent on the region’s roads.

The Scottish Government in February an additional Capital Grant for Highland Council of £2.046m for 2017/18 and members have agreed to allocate £1m of this to roads.

The 2017 Strategic Timber Transport Fund (STTF), managed by Forestry Commission Scotland, is to offer £7.85m nationally of co-funding support to projects that strengthen public roads and reduce disruption by timber haulage.

Highland Council is well placed to attract this match funding and would make every effort to secure this potential additional investment.

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