Building Briefs – September 21st

Gaiety Theatre, Ayr
Gaiety Theatre, Ayr

Gaiety Theatre re-opens after £2.4m restoration

Ayr’s B-listed Gaiety Theatre has re-opened following a £2.4m restoration at the hands of Austin-Smith:Lord.

The 1902 main auditorium was restored and updated to become a fully modernised space with new seating and reconfigured access allowing a greater number of wheelchair accessible spaces to be included as well as improving sightlines.

New lighting, sound equipment and a modern stage have also been delivered together with an upgraded ticket booth, remodelled entrance foyer and updated back of house facilities.

The upgrade marks successful conclusion of an eight year fundraising campaign.

Roofing replacement at Moray school

Work is to get under way next month on a £1million-plus project to replace part of the roof at Forres Academy in Moray.

The existing flat roofed area of the school has been the source of persistent problems over the years, particularly during periods of heavy rain.

Macleod Roofing has been awarded the contract for the work which will be carried out in three phases, beginning on October 5.

The first phase is due for completion by the end of the year and the subsequent phases should be completed by next June, depending on weather conditions.


Reconstruction works for Rob Roy Bridge

A historic bridge which is having a £530,000 reconstruction is to be closed overnight on two separate dates and a weekend to allow equipment to be moved for the final stages of the project.

Traffic going over Rob Roy Bridge in Peterculter will be diverted to alternative routes while the essential work takes place.

The reconstruction works started on the bridge in June and they are required to safeguard its future structural stability.

The original masonry arch is circa 1800 and the arch beam/column north section is circa 1920.

The works involve the demolition of the reinforced concrete section of the bridge, which will be rebuilt to modern standards. During the whole of the contract, there will be traffic lights in operation.

The work also includes the partial demolition of the bridge, and as such it will be required to be closed in order to remove and install equipment in order to move on to the next phase of the project.


Investigation works begin on Stirling’s old Harbour Wall

Ground investigation works began this week at Stirling’s old Harbour Wall which has been affected by subsidence.

The investigation works will continue until September 30 and includes boreholes being taken from the river bed. As a result Shore Road has been temporarily closed in order to safely allow the testing equipment to be installed on site.

The results of these geotechnical investigations will then inform the repair works, which are expected to commence over the Autumn and Winter. The current programme projects works will be completed in

Spring 2017, however the contractors are looking to compress this as best they can to manage the works as quickly as possible.

Council officers have engaged with civil engineering consultants to develop a programme for repairing the damaged section of wall as well as shoring up the full 70m section of remaining old timber and stone wall, to minimise the risk of further collapses.

The site has been continually monitored for stability and no movement has been recorded over the last 4 months. This monitoring will continue throughout the works and engineers have developed a contingency plan to strategically place aggregates in the collapsed area if the subsidence progresses and becomes critical before the repair is complete.


Plans for new Cabrach distillery

A trust set up to regenerate Scotland’s historic Cabrach region wants to open a distillery and heritage centre to bring jobs and visitors to the remote area.

The Cabrach Trust is embarking on a £5.3 million fundraising campaign to transform the historic Inverharroch Farm into a visitor attraction, with the aim of putting the Cabrach on the tourist map and marking its place in the story of Scotch whisky.


Plans for temporary Galashiels ICT service centre to be discussed

Plans to upgrade office space in Galashiels and temporarily accommodate a new CGI UK ICT service centre are to be discussed by Scottish Borders Council.

The upper floors of the council’s Paton Street building will be modernised, if councillors agree a report at a full meeting of the council on September 29.

A 13-year digital services contract worth £92 million was awarded by the council to CGI, a global IT and business process services provider, in March.

The contract will provide the council with state-of-the-art technology to deliver excellent customer services and streamlined systems.

As part of the deal, CGI is establishing a Scottish ICT Delivery Centre of Excellence in the Scottish Borders with up to 200 jobs to support its growing client base.

While CGI is confirming plans for a permanent base, it needs a temporary location to host its services in the Borders.


CALA’s cash boost for deaf children

A charity which supports deaf children in the north east has received a cash boost from CALA Homes.

Grampian Deaf Children’s Society arranged a fun-packed day out for its members thanks to an £800 donation from the housing developer’s community bursary fund. The charity took 16 of its young members to see a sign language-interpreted performance of a pantomime in Inverurie.

The donation was part of a £10,000 community bursary scheme which was launched last year to mark 140 years since the company was established.

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