Falkirk Council unveil £17m ‘urban quarter’ plans

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Ambitious plans for an ‘urban quarter’ in the Bog Road area of Falkirk have been unveiled.

The proposed £17 million infrastructure across from Falkirk Stadium is to stimulate and attract a mix of business, learning and leisure development on 376 acres of land to regenerate the eastern gateway into the town and create better connections between the town centre, Grangemouth and the Central Belt.

Falkirk Council’s vision would be financed by the local authority’s £67m Tax Incremental Finance (TIF) initiative.

The plans, led by the council’s development services team, aims to use low carbon technologies to build a more sophisticated infrastructure across the area that will enable further development, support traffic flow and attract private investment.

It includes an eye-catching feature to create the UK’s first circular elevated pedestrian and cycle crossing that will support the upgrade of the road network connecting each of the gateway sites.

Another feature is the development of waterways along landscaped pedestrian pathways to add character to the area while providing a sustainable urban drainage.

Leader of Falkirk Council Councillor Craig Martin said: “These exciting plans for a new sustainable urban quarter signal another step in the transformation of Falkirk’s economic fortunes.

“The gateway is a prime site to attract jobs, investment and development for our area. With the huge and growing appeal of the Kelpies, the Community Stadium facility and the forthcoming college campus there’s huge investment potential for developers across tourism, business and leisure.

“Through the Falkirk Tax Incremental Finance initiative we have the lever to prepare the site for development and create the connections needed to support expected traffic flow and the footfall.

“The latest TIF report shows that we are making good progress with the initiative and will be launching further phases to improve access and support new development in Grangemouth.”

The TIF money and other external sources will fund the programme of infrastructure by borrowing against future business rate income expected to be generated by the resulting regeneration and development around the gateway area.

The first phase of the works is planned to start in 2017 and will focus on enabling an extension of the town towards Helix Park and the Stadium, within a zone that supports the new college works.