North Lanarkshire Council has unveiled plans for a £1.2bn investment over the next five years to help transform its eight town centres into vibrant, thriving, sustainable places.
The council says that local people are at the heart of its ambitious vision and regeneration plans that aim to radically change its eight town centres, create multi-million pound mixed-use town and community hubs and remodel three country parks.
The scale of the council’s place-based investment has continued at pace over the last year and also finances wider community projects including essential infrastructure, the digital economy and connectivity and new-build housing, while maintaining current homes, buildings and facilities.
Jim Logue, leader of North Lanarkshire Council, said: “Over the next five years, we are investing £1.2 billion in creating town and community hubs, in our country parks, and in essential infrastructure and housing to help create a sustainable future for town centres that will benefit people and communities across North Lanarkshire.
“The draft visions for our town centres bring a tangible reality to the outline concepts and these will be developed with our communities, for our communities, so that we are creating vibrant, safe, resilient places where people are supported at all stages of their life and businesses can thrive.”
Central to the council’s plans is the creation of multi-purpose town and community hubs which will become the lifeblood of communities and be a constant in people’s lives.
The town hubs and smaller, complementary community hubs will provide a range of services including education, leisure, public services, commercial opportunities and flexible work spaces, bringing communities closer in one central space.
Progress over the last year was outlined at the council’s policy and strategy committee, including:
- Five schools in construction, with seven at the design stage and six at the pre-design stage, building on the 52 built since 1996. This includes work currently underway to design new facilities that will deliver for whole communities such as informal performance spaces at Newmains Community Hub and other proposed hub projects at Abronhill and Wishaw.
- £202m of City Deal investment with the completion of Glenboig Link Road in 2018 and progress underway at East Airdrie Link Road, Ravenscraig Infrastructure Access North and South, Motherwell Town Centre Interchange, Orchard Farm roundabout, and Eurocentral Park, Ride, and Share.
- 833 new homes built through the council’s new supply programme since 2010, with a further 339 on site and a further 1,215 homes in progress.
- Phase 1 of tower strategy underway to demolish 1,700 flats including 15 tower blocks such as Holehills, Northburn Place and Burnside Court to create space for new-build homes.
- 19 town centre projects currently being developed including developing over 15 hectares of vacant and derelict land for future industrial use, the demolition of the former Orrs building in Airdrie to build 20 residential units and the conversion of the former council building in Coatbridge’s Kildonan Street into social rented housing, office space and 49 new-build homes
- £5.5m investment in local nature reserves, country parks, and key greenspace sites over the last five years including the development of the Badger Trail at Palacerigg and an outdoor education centre at Strathclyde Park.
Councillor Logue added: “These projects will be underpinned by the highest quality digital infrastructure and a network of active travel routes, so our people are connected digitally and physically to our towns, communities and greenspaces. The pace of change is vast and we’re creating places that people truly want to live, learn, work, invest and visit.”