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Gallowhill’s Arkleston Court demolition countdown

Arkleston Court 11

Gallowhill’s Arkleston Court demolition countdown.

The empty high rise block is due to be demolished later this year following the major refurbishment programme of the other two neighbouring blocks.  Following the major refurbishment programme, all flats in the two neighbouring blocks at Glencairn Court and Gallowhill Court have been upgraded and are now fully let. The demolition of Arkleston Court won’t be complete until approximately mid-September.

Currently the empty high rise block is being used to train fire-fighters in what can be a difficult environment for the service. Crews have been using the building for search and rescue drills, tactical ventilation and other scenarios, giving them additional experience operating in what can be a challenging setting.

Arkleston Court 11

Renfrewshire Council does not intend to use explosives in the demolition as the block is too close to the nearby homes to do this safely, therefore the building will be dismantled.

The first step will involve taking out the interior fittings such as central heating, plumbing and wiring, the roof will then be removed before the building is demolished. The demolition itself will take about six weeks.

This is the planned schedule of work; some of the timings are weather dependent and may change.

Soft strip and preparation                     10 February – July 2014
Roof removal                                              5 May – 4 July (may be brought forward, weather dependant)
Mechanical demolition                           30 July – 19 September
Site reinstatement                                    8 September – 29 September.

Blog post by Tracey Clements.

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Council expands letting scheme to Foxbar

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Council expands letting scheme to Foxbar.

Renfrewshire Council is expanding its choice-based housing letting service to the Foxbar area of Paisley.

HomeChoice@Renfrewshire gives applicants the opportunity to decide where they want to live and the specific property they’d like to apply for.

Available properties are advertised weekly online and in housing offices, in a similar style to the way estate agents market private properties.

foxbar

The scheme has proven successful for the people who have recently moved into the newly-renovated flats in Gallowhill. It will now be extended to Foxbar and will include all Council properties available for letting of any size and type.

Councillor Tommy Williams, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Housing and Community Safety Policy Board, said: “HomeChoice@Renfrewshire was introduced earlier this year and has been very successful in Gallowhill, so I’m delighted we’re now able to expand to Foxbar and also involve a wider range of properties.

“Modern applicants want as much choice as possible, and that’s what we aim to give them with this scheme. With more involvement in choosing a property, we’re hoping tenants will be happier with the end result and that they’ll feel settled in their new home for many years.

“Taken together with our multi-million pound investment in new build homes and in bringing our current stock up to the Scottish Housing Quality Standard, it all adds up to a major commitment to making Renfrewshire a better place to live.”

Properties in Foxbar included in the HomeChoice@Renfrewshire – Choice Based Lettings scheme will be advertised from Monday 11 November 2013.

More information about the scheme is available online at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/homechoice.

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Phase two of Gallowhill makeover underway

Group shot outside Glencairn Court

Phase two of Gallowhill makeover underway

A £6million project to transform two blocks of multi-storey flats in Gallowhill, Paisley, has entered its second stage.

External work is now underway which will see the two blocks of high flats get a complete new look thanks to over-cladding and enclosed balconies.

Scottish Gas are now on site carrying out the over-cladding at Glencairn Court and Gallowhill Court.

Following this the balconies will be enclosed with brand new state of the art windows which will allow tenants the option of keeping them closed or sliding back the panels to sit outside in good weather.

As well as giving the flats a fresher, more modern look, the makeover will also make the buildings more energy efficient.

Environmental improvements and changes to the entrance to each block will further improve the external appearance of the area.

Flats are also being improved internally, with new kitchens, bathrooms and rewiring where required. Improvement works within the blocks include new front doors to each flat and redecoration of the landings and foyers.

The flats at Glencairn Court are being converted to amenity standard for people with mobility needs and older people and a single storey extension will be added to provide a social space for residents.

Councillor Tommy Williams, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Housing and Community Safety Policy Board, said: “This work will really transform the overall look of these flats and provide modern, energy efficient homes for our tenants. It’s also making a major contribution to the overall regeneration of the Gallowhill area. The internal improvements are already well underway and we’ve had a really positive reaction from the tenants who’ve already moved in.”

Steve Gapik, CESP Manager for Scottish Gas, said: “We’re very pleased to be working with Renfrewshire Council on the second phase of works to improve the energy efficiency of homes in Gallowhill. Residents can expect a real transformation over the coming months. Renfrewshire Council and Scottish Gas are investing substantially to improve the flats in these two blocks, installing an insulated cladding render which will give homes a bright new appearance whilst also making them warmer. These improvements will make a real difference, making homes more energy efficient, more comfortable to live in and potentially lowering heating bills significantly.”

As well as investment by the Council in the high flats, Gallowhill is also benefitting from a new-build housing project. Working in partnership with the Council, and drawing on grant funding from the Scottish Government, Sanctuary Scotland Housing Association is building 71 new back-and-front-door houses for social rent at nearby Dundonald Road.
Roddy Macdonald, Sanctuary’s head of development – Scotland, said: “Sanctuary Scotland is delighted to be working in partnership with Renfrewshire Council and the Scottish Government to help regenerate Gallowhill. The 71 houses built by us will provide much-needed new homes for local families for social rent.”

www.renfrewshire.gov.uk

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Local Workers Benefit From Housing Makeover

Andrew Hamilton Martin Keenan and Cllr Kenny MacLaren
Two young Renfrewshire men are getting a double boost from a project to regenerate housing in their local community.Martin Keenan and Andrew Hamilton are not only getting to see their community regenerated but they themselves are helping to carry out the work.Both men have been employed to work for Renfrewshire Council on the £6m makeover of the high flats at Gallowhill.

Martin Keenan, from Hunterhill, was taken on to work on the project through the ‘Adopt an Apprentice’ Scheme.

The scheme takes on local apprentices to finish their apprenticeships when their employers have gone out of business.

Martin said:  “I appreciate the opportunity to complete my apprenticeship with Renfrewshire Council, where I am gaining essential training and experience which will assist me for future employability.”

And for Andy in particular the project has extra significance because he actually lives in one of the blocks, Glencairn Court.  

Andy was taken on to work on the project after being made redundant from his previous job.

Andy said: “Having been made redundant, I cannot believe my luck at getting the opportunity to work with Renfrewshire Council, carrying out construction work that I enjoy while at the same time contributing to the upgrade of my local area.”

The project focuses on Glencairn Court and Gallowhill Court where flats will get new kitchens and bathrooms where required.  Internal works also includes rewiring, decoration and new flooring in the kitchen and bathroom. Common areas will also be improved – with new front doors and landings and entrance foyers redecorated.   

The blocks will also get external overcladding and enclosed balconies which will make them more energy efficient.  Along with environmental improvements to the area surrounding the blocks, this will improve the overall appearance of the buildings.

In addition, Glencairn Court is being converted specifically for older people and people with amenity needs and an extension will be added to provide a social space for residents to get together for meetings and social activities.

Councillor Kenny MacLaren, Renfrewshire Council’s Housing Spokesperson said: “This project will not only see major improvements to these two blocks it will benefit the wider area by making these blocks more attractive for people to live, provide more housing options for tenants in the area and reduce the high turnover of tenants, creating more stable communities within these blocks. On top of that it is helping to create jobs for local residents like Martin and Andrew.”

Work on Glencairn Court is expected to be complete by June 2012 with work on Gallowhill Court also due to start in June.

A third block Arkleston Court, will be demolished once all tenants have been rehoused.

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Build new council houses in Renfrewshire

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Two bids worth almost £4million for funding to build new council houses in Renfrewshire have been accepted by the Scottish Government.

Renfrewshire Council has been awarded a grant of £1.1million from the Innovation and Investment Fund to build 37 new homes on the site of the former Castle House care home in Paisley. In addition, Sanctuary Scotland Housing Association has been awarded a further £2,799, 530 to build 71 homes in Gallowhill.

Councillor Kenny MacLaren, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Housing and Community Safety Policy Board, said: “This is great news for Renfrewshire. In the current economic climate there are more people than ever struggling to find affordable homes for rent so these new homes will be a very welcome addition to the range of housing options available locally.”
The Castle House site on Barrhead Road already has planning permission for housing, and had previously been earmarked for sale to private developers however no deal was agreed. Read more