Town centre to get £1/2m cash windfall

Councillors Altany Craik and Fiona Grant met with contractors to assess progress on several regeneration projects.
Councillors Altany Craik and Fiona Grant met with contractors to assess progress on several regeneration projects.

A wide-reaching £1/2 million plan to give Glenrothes town centre a more distinctive and integrated town centre for visitors, has been revealed.

The proposal, at a cost of £532,000, will aim to tie in more than £10m worth of current or planned redevelopment and regeneration projects currently earmarked for Glenrothes, with existing facilities, to improve the town centre experience for visitors and shoppers.

Included within the ambitious plan will be the creation of a public greenspace on the site of the former Glenrothes House in North Street, which has been boarded up since it was demolished in 2013.

The implementation of a 20mph zone along North Street, improved cycle networks across the town centre and the improvement of other public spaces around the existing Kingdom Shopping Centre are also planned.

£72,500 of the funding will also be used to install feature lighting to some of the town’s principle public art works and key buildings.

The move have been warmly welcomed by the town’s councillors.

“I am delighted that, after decades of uncertainty, work has started to regenerate Glenrothes town centre,” said Cllr Fiona Grant, area committee convener.

While Cllr Altany Craik, Economy, Tourism, Strategic Planning and Transportation Committee convener, added: “This is the largest town centre investment in Fife in over 20 years, and excellent news for local people, communities and businesses.

“The council is committed to supporting the on-going regeneration of Glenrothes town centre and looks forward to seeing the completion of this exciting development.”

However, while welcoming the new investment, Cllr Ross Vettraino warned of the need for improved investment into existing retail areas of the town centre.

“It is important to note that when the application went in for the CISWO redevelopment, which will bring in among other a Marks & Spencer, the owners of the shopping centre objected on the grounds that it would damage the centre,” he said.

“That’s my fear. The town’s economy is in decline and something is needed if we are not to have a ruin on our hands.

“If the shopping centre isn’t vibrant then the owners will not improve it.

“We don’t want to be left with a brand new development on one side of North street and a problem on the other.”