Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has announced that it will not be listing Cumbernauld town centre, giving the go-ahead for ambitious regeneration plans.
Despite these challenging times, the announcement means that North Lanarkshire Council can now resume its intention to purchase the town centre and plan its transformation.
The Centre Cumbernauld - built in 1967 as part of the new town development – is ultimately expected to be replaced with a multi-purpose town hub located in the heart of the community, although the redevelopment will not commence for a number of years as a long-term, multi-million pound programme.
The purchase will mean that the vast majority of the original town centre buildings will be owned by the council.
Council-owned facilities such as the Tryst, Library and other offices in the town centre will also be replaced, with facilities transferring to the new state-of-the-art hub as part of the programme.
Councillor Paul Kelly, Depute Leader of North Lanarkshire Council, said: “Local people, communities and businesses are at the heart of the ambitious vision and regeneration plans that will radically change the landscape of Cumbernauld town centre and how it operates.
“We are all living in very challenging times and the impact of inflation is affecting the cost of supplies, materials and development, which will be reflected in our plans.
"We do still intend for the town centre to be a vibrant, mixed-use, welcoming, safe and resilient place where people are supported at all stages of their lives, where they can live and socialise and where businesses can thrive.”
Following the council’s announcement to redevelop the town centre, an application was made by a member of the public to Historic Environment Scotland (HES) to assess Cumbernauld town centre for listing.
An assessment and public consultation took place over the summer and HES has now agreed that the town centre will not be listed at this time as our development proposals are too far advanced.
The initial plans for the town centre outlined the creation of a multi-purpose town hub which will become the lifeblood of communities and be a constant in people’s lives and will provide a range of services including education, leisure, public services, commercial opportunities, and flexible workspaces, bringing communities closer in one central area.
Councillor Kelly added: “I believe Historic Environment Scotland have made the right decision following the public consultation which found an enormous amount of support for our proposals.
"Indeed our own consultation found that 77% of residents said that the town centre should not be preserved and 85% were not satisfied with it currently.
"Indeed our own consultation found that 80% of residents agreed that the town centre should be for regeneration.
"The future proposals for the town centre will be subject to extensive consultation with the people who will use the town centre.
“We believe that the future of Cumbernauld town centre should be shaped by the people who will use and rely on it.”