A vacant lot abandoned and empty for decades will be transformed into green space to help reduce the risk of flooding.
Proposals for the abandoned land at Barrhead include the re-pipeline of water from Levern. The East Renfrewshire Planning Committee has been recommended to approve work on a former depot site on Walton Street, which has been empty for over 20 years.
This would involve a new river channel, replacement banks, landscaping to provide green space, seating and pathways. There would also be work to modify the weir at Carlibar and create a replacement footbridge at the rear of the foundry.
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Council is behind the application, which will go to the planning committee tomorrow (Wednesday).
A report from the planning officials said: ‘It is envisaged that the proposal, by reintroducing a more natural river channel and wider overflow/flood zones will reduce the risk of flooding.
“Furthermore, by improving water flows, and therefore the capacity of sediment in the water and the potential for sediment deposition, the proposal will improve the aquatic environment.”
Part of the site, north of Barrhead town centre, sits on the vacant and derelict cadastre while the remainder sits in Carlibar Park.
The proposal aims to “create natural flooding capacity by widening the river, which will help protect Glen Street properties and improve water quality and biodiversity in the area.”
The planners added: “The proposal will increase the area of green space and extend the network of public footpaths in the area.
“The information submitted by the applicant indicates that there will be extensive landscaping, particularly in the area of derelict land which is currently ravaging the area.”
In September last year, the council announced that the ground would be transformed thanks to a grant of over £1million from the Scottish Government.
He said an earlier flood risk meant the land could not be developed but the river would now be widened and re-channeled to create an ‘attractive waterfront’ which can absorb increased heavy rainfall caused by climate change.
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At the time, council leader Tony Buchanan said: ‘I am delighted that Scottish Government funding is supporting the transformation of this derelict land, which would be a welcome addition to the area.
“The impact of Covid-19 and subsequent closures have shown us how important high quality local green spaces are to our health and well-being.
“These river works would not only help Barrhead adapt to climate change, but would also be an attractive area for our local residents and visitors.”