Southside Housing Association leads the way to better green space

Scottish Natural Heritage handing over the cheque to Southside Housing Association alongside local residents and members of the Friends of the Halfway Community Park group
Scottish Natural Heritage handing over the cheque to Southside Housing Association alongside local residents and members of the Friends of the Halfway Community Park group

A community in Cardonald is celebrating an award of £901k from the Green Infrastructure Fund to transform the green space around their homes.

At an award ceremony in Moss Heights Avenue, representatives from Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH), which manages the Green Infrastructure Fund, presented the cheque for £901k to local residents and representatives from Southside Housing Association (SHA).

The open space around the properties between Craigton Cemetery and Paisley Road West has been an underused resource for decades and the new investment will allow the community to create a community park with new paths, safe play facilities separated from cars and rich range of plants and flowers.

The Halfway Community Park will be delivered by Southside Housing Association who will part fund the improvement works to the local environment.

Pauline Fletcher, community initiatives manager at Southside Housing Association, said: “We have spent nearly £20m improving the homes in the area and the environmental improvements are the missing piece of the jigsaw. Working with the local residents we developed the idea for a Community Park and were granted planning permission by Glasgow City Council for our vision in 2015.

“This funding award is a major boost for our plans and we hope to supplement it with further financial support from Glasgow City Council and other sources. We are working with local residents to establish a ‘Friends of the Halfway Community Park’ network to oversee the improvements to the neighbourhood.”

Dorothy Murray, Southside Housing Association chair, said: “This is fantastic news for Cardonald. The area in Halfway has been underused and ignored for many years and this money will help the community transform it into a valuable and safer space for local families. We look forward to working with the local community and the city council to create the Halfway Community Park and make it a vibrant inclusive asset for future generations.”

Local resident and member of the Friends of the Halfway Community Park, Alison Devlin, said: “This money will help the area as there’s nothing for the kids to do. When all the changes are made it will be a nicer place for all the kids to play and hopefully we’ll see more of the community out and about getting involved.”

The Halfway Community Park project is part of a major new £37.5 million Scottish programme of projects to improve the urban environment of larger towns and cities. The Green Infrastructure Strategic Intervention is led by Scottish Natural Heritage and is part funded through the European Regional Development Fund.

Iain Rennick, head of the Green Infrastructure fund for SNH, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Southside Housing Association to deliver this project and all the benefits it will bring to the Cardonald community. The fact that local people were so involved in developing the project and in its future management, was key to our decision to award funding to it. It is well recognised that improving greenspace in urban areas, not only brings environmental benefits, but also health, economic and social benefits too. We have a tremendous opportunity through the ERDF funding available to us over the next few years for this project, and other projects around Scotland, to further demonstrate this.”

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