Town Centre Fund projects agreed

Helensburgh seafront plan

By Julie Millar

Argyll and Bute Council has agreed on eight distinct projects, across the area, that will benefit from an allocation of £1,242,000 from the Scottish Government’s Town Centre Fund.

The decision was taken at the meeting of full council on 27 June 2019.

The projects identified to receive the funding are:

  • Lochgilphead Front Green additional works – £200,000;
  • Bowmore public realm enhancements – £85,000;
  • Campbeltown small-scale shopfront improvements – £50,000;
  • Rosneath Howie Park community-driven enhancements – £90,000;
  • Hermitage Park additional community and events resource – £35,000;
  • Helensburgh Pier pedestrian access enhancements – £85,000;
  • Revitalisation of outdoor event space at Dunoon Public Realm/Band Stand – £200,000; and
  • Rothesay Pontoons – £150,000.

Councillor Aileen Morton, Policy Lead for Economic Development, said: “Argyll and Bute is known for its warm and welcoming communities. This is a chance to make key improvements to our town centres to help build the message that our communities are places for people to spend more time in. More appealing town centres will help attract new investment and encourage footfall from residents and visitors to enjoy the sights and sounds we have to offer.

“Growing our population is crucial to Argyll and Bute’s future success. To do that we need to create a town centres that support our businesses and encourage the entrepreneurial spirit within the area – making our towns places where people want to live, work, invest and visit.”

The council agreed to delegate the final decision on the projects suggested for Oban, Lorn and the Isles, to the Executive Director. The next step will be for the local area committee to consider how the money could be distributed to projects, and then a final decision will be made in accordance with the council decision.

The Town Centre Fund is a capital fund aimed at driving forward economic growth and helping town centres to become more diverse and sustainable. Where possible, funding should be concentrated on larger-scale projects that impact on populations of more than 1000.

Funds have to be fully committed this financial year with contracts at the very least signed or started on site Councils do not need to make further bids to the Scottish Government, but can speed up or enhance current plans that will make town centres attractive, vibrant places.

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