Work begins on £36m Garnock Education Campus

(left to right) Brian McQuade, Kier Construction managing director; Stephen Parker, Kier Construction; Michael McBrearty, chief executive, hub South West; Provost Joan Sturgeon; Kenneth Gibson MSP; Cllr Anthony Gurney; Ryan Broadley, Kier Construction

Work has begun on the creation of a £36 million education campus in the Garnock Valley in Ayrshire.

The campus, which will relocate and merge Garnock Academy and Glengarnock Primary school on a greenfield site in Glengarnock, will cater for 1,500 students – 1,200 secondary, 300 primary and 30 nursery. Due for completion in late 2016, the latest project to be undertaken by hub South West will also provide community facilities such as a six-lane 25m swimming pool and fitness suite.

The start of construction was marked by a VIP ground breaking ceremony when North Ayrshire Council’s Provost Joan Sturgeon performed the turf cutting ceremony.

hub South West has appointed Kier Construction to deliver the project on behalf of the council.

The £36m design, build, finance and maintain (DBFM) campus will attract revenue support from the Scottish Futures Trust (SFT) as part of the Scottish Government’s ‘Scotland’s Schools for the Future’ Phase 3 programme.

Michael McBrearty, chief executive of hub South West, said: “Hub South West is a public private partnership which enables the cost efficient design and construction of community facilities, including schools, health centres and care homes, within the south-west region of Scotland.

“Garnock Academy will be a flagship project generating growth, maximising local investment and creating local opportunities for training, learning and further education. We selected Kier Construction as they are a national business who have committed to delivering economic growth and regeneration opportunities for the benefit of the local economy.”

During 2014, hub South West successfully handed over five projects totalling £12m and is currently progressing capital investments with a total project value of £563m, delivering a programme of schools, health centres and office accommodation throughout Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway. The partnership aims to invest over £500m in new public buildings over the next five years, increasing to £1bn over the next 10 years, providing additional business and employment opportunities within their South West territory area.

Mr McBrearty added: “By actively encouraging small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) to join our Supplier Network, we provide local contract opportunities and help potential suppliers secure work via our Supply Chain Institute. Additional support is also available via our Skills Academy generating work placements, apprenticeships and training opportunities.”

Brian McQuade, managing director of Kier Construction’s Scotland & north-east England business, said: “We are delighted to have been appointed to construct this key educational and community facility for North Ayrshire Council, and the people of the Garnock Valley.

“The dream of a state-of-the-art campus, which will provide first-class facilities for everyone who lives and works in the area, is now one step closer to reality.

“We will be working closely with hub South West, North Ayrshire Council and the Garnock Valley communities to construct a campus that will inspire future generations. This is a significant investment into the local economy and we look forward to working in the area to provide additional employment opportunities, including apprenticeships, for locally based suppliers and subcontractors.”

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