Planning permission granted for Neilston Learning Campus

A proposed new learning campus that will bring Neilston and St Thomas’ primaries and Madras Family Centre together on a shared site has been granted planning permission.

Planning permission granted for Neilston Learning Campus

East Renfrewshire Council approved the plans at a meeting of the planning committee on February 16 and work will now be progressed to take the project forward.

The schools and family centre will retain their unique identities and teaching spaces, with shared facilities including a large sports hall, Digi-Zone, a dedicated space for science, technology, engineering and maths (STEAM), an art room, and drama and music space.

Designed by BDP, the new facility will be built on ground within the site of the current Neilston Primary, allowing the existing school to continue running during construction.

Once the new school and nursery facility is completed, the current Neilston Primary and Madras Family Centre will be demolished to allow an all-weather football pitch and multi-use games area to be created.

Councillor Alan Lafferty, convener for education and equalities, said: “This is another milestone for this exciting project which will provide fantastic benefits for Neilston and beyond. Education is obviously about far more than bricks and mortar, but providing the very best learning environments for our children and young people is certainly an important factor in creating the right atmosphere to challenge their thinking and stretch their imaginations. We’ve already delivered a number of new school facilities in recent years, and I can’t wait to see this latest addition start to take shape.”

Planning permission granted for Neilston Learning Campus

An aerial site view of the Neilston Learning and Leisure Campus

Outlining the design approach last year, Lindsey Mitchell, architect director, BDP Glasgow Studio, said: “This will be a state-of-the-art education and community facility that will not only provide amenities to meet 21st century learning, but will also adopt sustainable design principles. A passive approach to energy has been embraced in the design, with the building orientation, form factor and building fabric all contributing to making an energy efficient building. Outdoor spaces have also been designed with sustainability in mind, including a sustainable drainage strategy, the inclusion of a community growing garden and reuse of water in the external play spaces.”

Following the completion of all work at the Learning Campus site, the current St Thomas’ Primary building will be demolished.

As part of a separate phase of regeneration works planned for Neilston, proposals are still being developed to use this site to build a Community and Wellbeing Hub for the village, which would include a new swimming pool.

With the two sites situated closely together, it is hoped that strong links would be developed between the Learning Campus and Community and Wellbeing Hub.

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