Ten-year mixed use masterplan approved at Clydebank shipyard

queens-quayA new civic heart will be created at the former John Brown’s shipyard in Clydebank, after plans to redevelop the site were given the go ahead by councillors.

The centrepiece of the development – which will include housing, retail and leisure outlets, and a health quarter – will be the refurbished fitting out basin and Titan Crane visitor attraction.

It has also been revealed that it is hoped a District Heating Scheme will be created that would be powered by extracting energy from the river basin. These plans are still in the early stages of development, but it would be the first system of its kind anywhere in Scotland if created.

Councillors on the planning committee unanimously agreed to grant planning permission in principle for the Queens Quay masterplan, which was presented by the owners of the site Clydeside Regeneration Limited (CRL).

Paul O’Donnell, representing CRL, told the committee: “At long last this represents the regeneration of John Brown’s shipyard. We aim to create an esplanade along the entire frontage of the Clyde and round the basin, opening up this area of Clydebank to the whole community for the first time. Our aspiration is to create a development that’s a little bit different from other major urban regeneration projects, with high design standards at its heart. This development will undoubtedly grow the local economy and will become a focal point for the community to use.”

Queens QuayThe first phase of the development, which will now get underway, will see essential infrastructure works carried out, including repairs to quay walls and the creation of a new road layout.

Once this work is complete the development of the care home and health centre will be able to begin, with the housing, retail and leisure elements of the plan to follow. All of these developments will complement the existing facilities at Queens Quay, including West Dunbartonshire Council’s offices at Aurora House and the new £23.5 million leisure centre which is set to open early next year.

It is expected that it will take more than 10 years to fully develop the 23 hectare site.

Councillor Lawrence O’Neill, convener of planning, said: “This will be the most significant development in Clydebank for a generation and I’m delighted to see it moving to the next stage. We have an opportunity to make this an extremely unique place, which will bring benefits to the whole of Clydebank and attract more people to visit our great town. The plans that we have agreed to approve will help to create a new civic heart for Clydebank, which is extremely exciting.”

Provost Douglas McAllister, vice convener of planning, added: “John Brown’s shipyard built some of the world’s most famous sips and now we are set to breathe new life into this key site. Bankies have a strong affinity with the yard and I’m delighted that we will now be opening it up for the whole community to enjoy. As well as creating around 1,000 homes across the whole development, which will improve local housing opportunities, it will also provide a state-of-the-art care home and health centre for the people of Clydebank. This is going to be a fantastic development and I can’t wait to see it moving forward.”

Queens Quay aerialThe former John Brown Shipyard was bought by Clydeside Regeneration in 2004. However, due to difficult market conditions, the owners were unable to attract the investment to fund the necessary infrastructure works.

In July last year, the council agreed to invest £15m to fund this work in order to kick-start the development of the site. In return the council will recoup its investment from a share of the financial benefits of any future land sales at the site, and in the economic benefits this would bring to the area.

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