Scottish Borders Council

Agenda item

Galashiels Masterplan (Regeneration Framework)

Consider report by Service Director Assets and Infrastructure.  (Please see separate supplement.)



There had been circulated copies of a report by the Service Director Assets & Infrastructure   updating on the development of the outline masterplan which had been developed for Galashiels to support the wider regeneration of the town centre.  The development of the masterplan, by Stallan Brand Architects, was also the starting point against which the Council could begin to fulfil its commitment within the Borders Railway Blueprint to maximise the full economic potential of the Borders Railway and comprised a variety of mixed use proposals, primarily focused on the delivery of residential retail, business space and regeneration led activities.  There remained significant work to be undertaken that would include updating the Local Development Plan to incorporate appropriate masterplan proposals, developing a communications and branding strategy in conjunction with partners such as Energise Galashiels or as part of the Galashiels BID (Business Improvement District), which would attract private sector investment through agreed delivery mechanisms, development of business cases for individual projects as they came forward, analysis of risk and detailed costed proposals for the comprehensive development of the area.   With reference to the parallel report on the Tweedbank masterplan detailed above it was noted these provided and demonstrated fundamentally different approaches.  Galashiels was an established urban centre, therefore that masterplan focused on opportunities for regeneration.   The Tweedbank masterplan was seen as a significant expansion to the existing Tweedbank settlement as well as repositioning the current Tweedbank Industrial Estate as a new Borders Innovation Park.  The masterplan was intended as a ‘vision’ document that demonstrated one architect’s proposals and architectural language for how the area could be developed.  As more formative proposals, and detailed planning applications were brought forward, those would be subject to change and likely reflect private developer’s aspiration for individual sites or proposals.  Officers were currently managing the 2nd stage application for TCRG (Regeneration Grant) funding for GToS Visitor Attraction.  This bid had positioned the GToS building as Phase 1 of a wider Galashiels Regeneration proposal.  The masterplan document was intended therefore to support the identification, development and delivery of second and subsequent phases of future regeneration projects.  Members commended the masterplan and the prospect of attracting both the public and private sector into Galashiels.  In response to a question on education provision the Service Director advised that the architects had previous involvement with the Schools Estates’ Review and an assessment of education provision in Galashiels and that the Service Director Children and Young People was currently reviewing the need for investment in the High School estate.




(a)     NOTED the contents of the Galashiels masterplan document;


(b)    that the Service Director Regulatory Services gave due consideration to the adoption of appropriate components of the masterplan in the production of the new Local Development Plan;


(c)     that the Executive Director bring forward a report to a future Economic Development themed Executive meeting outlining:


(i)      how the masterplan proposals could best be utilised to strengthen         existing activities;

(ii)     publicised to leverage private sector interest and investment in the                     town; and


          (iii)    what measures proposed within the masterplan the Council could implement following the opening of the Great Tapestry of Scotland visitor attraction to further reinforce the ambitions for the regeneration of Galashiels town centre.

Supporting documents:



Scottish Borders Council

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