Over 20 years after the first planning application was first submitted for the site to the east of Gilston Crescent, a major new proposal is due to go before Falkirk Council’s planning department on Wednesday, February 16.
The application for planning permission in principle comes from Hansteen Land Ltd and covers 55.6 hectares of land located to the east of Gilston Crescent.
According to Hansteen, the proposed new mixed-use neighbourhood will provide employment and commercial land, around 500 homes – including 25 per cent affordable housing – large areas of parkland and a new neighbourhood centre with potential for retail and community use.
The firm stated, after previous planning proposals for this site were unable to attract large scale business users, it is now seeking approval for this revised, deliverable mix of uses.
This includes around 2.5 hectares of “serviceable employment land” for new or local businesses, start-up business enterprises and workshops.
A Hansteen Land Ltd spokesperson said: “The Gilston Park development will bring considerable economic benefits to the local community, delivering a jobs boost and millions of pounds worth of investment.
“Creating considerable employment and commercial opportunities, the development will also serve to deliver much-needed housing, including affordable housing. The delivery of linked parks, play areas and new habitat areas will also serve to deliver significant environmental and recreational benefits.
“Our proposals will greatly assist in the regeneration of the area and if approved we look forward to continue to work with the Council and the local community on their delivery.”
Hansteen stated additional contributions of around £8 million will also go towards local education, affordable housing, transport infrastructure – including upgrades to junction 4 of the M9 and local junction improvements – new and improved bus services and a site for new healthcare facilities if this is sought by NHS Forth Valley.
Around 80 direct construction jobs and 70 indirect jobs will also be created for every year of construction and once established, Gilston Park is expected to support around 300 full-time jobs.
Hansteen claimed major new areas of connected parks will also be established, with Gilston Burn forming a key focus of the attractive and accessible new neighbourhood.
A central sustainable urban drainage (SUDS) pond and associated ecological habitat areas will be provided, with a boardwalk forming part of an extensive new path network.
A generous provision of space will be given over to children’s play, including a Multi-Use Games Area near Gilston Crescent, recreation and an area for sport.
The proposal will also involve the extension of bus service F25 through the site.
Lynn Blaikie, president of Forth Valley Chamber of Commerce, said: “It is fantastic to see this level of investment being made in the area, delivering land for employment and commercial uses, as well as much-needed housing.
"As we recover from the impacts of Covid-19, the delivery of hundreds of jobs and considerable investment is to be applauded, increasing education provision and delivering key transport infrastructure improvements and new bus services.”