Potential £490k boost for Stranraer regeneration projects

Regeneration projects in Stranraer could benefit from a £493,060 cash injection. Councillors at Thursday’s Economy, Environment and Infrastructure (EEI) committee will be asked to agree that this money can be used to fund regeneration projects in Stranraer.

The funding has become available due to savings made on a project to provide a public slipway, on the waterfront. Following a value engineering process aimed at securing best value, the proposed slipway will focus on smaller boats and larger boats up to and over 30 tonnes would be hoisted out using a proposed hydraulic boat lift instead of using the new slipway.

The use of a boat lift in conjunction with a smaller slipway, allows the Council to provide the same level of infrastructure but at a substantial cost saving when compared to the original design. The provision of a boat lift also provides new opportunities to develop and offer services not currently available , for example hull cleaning for boats using the lift to temporarily raise boats.

It is recommended that once the final costs are agreed, a further report detailing options for the allocation of this funding is considered by the Wigtown Area Committee. The recommendation from the Area Committee would then be referred to EEI committee for consideration and approval.

Cllr Colin Smyth, Chairman of the Economy, Environment and Infrastructure Committee said: “If councillors agree this option for the slipway, which includes a hydraulic boat lift for larger boats, it will release significant additional funding. This could be used on one or more projects for example, to help kick start the work in the East Pier area once a preferred developer is agreed. In the first instance members of Wigtown Area Committee will be asked their views on how this funding could best be spent.

“The regeneration of Stranraer including the waterfront is a key priority for the council so it’s important this money is invested in taking that regeneration forward. As well as planned spending of £1.5 million this year on a range of projects from the slipway to Stranraer gateway, the council also plans to invest at least a further £1.1 million during the following two years to match fund a major townscape heritage initiative for the town and to improve facilities in Agnew Park. We will also be looking at how we can add to this not only from council resources but by working with developers and continuing to put pressure on the Scottish Government for them to bring investment to the table”.