Grantee: West Dunbartonshire Council
What we set out to achieve
West Dunbartonshire Council is planning to develop the former St Eunan’s Primary School site which is located within a residential neighbourhood of Clydebank and is currently inaccessible and severely contaminated. The site will be transformed into an attractive and exciting new Community Green Space with biodiversity areas, raised bed allotments, recreational areas for children, outdoor exercise equipment, and outdoor education areas as well as interpretation about the heritage of Clydebank. In addition, new pedestrian routes will be provided through the site.
Where did the idea come from?
This Community Green Space will be created with the community for the community. To ensure that the Council identifies the best long-term use for the site, whilst addressing current contamination issues, a feasibility study was commissioned and a consultation event with the local community was held in June 2016. Residents had an opportunity to discuss the future of the site, provide their suggestions as well as voice concerns. A biodiversity park emerged as the most favoured option, followed by community raised bed allotments and pathways. Local residents were also invited to get involved in project development, contribute their ideas and provide feedback on design proposals.
How communities have helped us develop our ideas
The Council is actively encouraging further community engagement in site management through supporting the establishment of ‘Friends of Park’ and Community Allotments groups. A number of local residents have already expressed their interest and it is envisaged that active and involved groups will be created. In addition, a long-term cooperation with the local schools, Community Planning and other partners will be established to ensure that active use of the site and its resources is encouraged and promoted and that barriers to participation, which may be experienced by some residents, are removed.
How the project fits into the bigger picture
The project will deliver an additional 2.07 hectares of green infrastructure and extend open space and recreation facilities for people of all ages in an urban area where there is a clear shortfall. The site will become an important asset for the local community in an area where 80% of the population live within 500 metres of vacant and derelict land and where there is a need for better quality greenspaces.
How the project will improve the local area
New pedestrian routes through the site will support active travel through the provision of convenient and accessible connections for pedestrians and cyclists between the town centre and residential areas to the north of the site. Biodiversity areas for wildlife will enhance local habitats through including bat boxes, bird boxes and hedgehog boxes and a range of different plants to provide opportunities for shelter and food for various species throughout the year. The project will improve opportunities for contact with nature and for physical activity for local children and adults and will contribute to the improved health and well-being of local residents. In addition site facilities will support integration and provide opportunities for community members to come together. Provision of an attractive, accessible and strongly linked recreational space, which will be used by local residents and the wider community, will create a new positive identity for this part of the town and contribute towards the wider regeneration of Clydebank.