Housing developments kickstart regeneration

West Langland Street39 state of the art new houses at the West Langlands Street development in Kilmarnock town centre are set to be completed by the end of the month with keys being handed to tenants just after Easter.

The site, which is part of the Council’s strategic priority of promoting town centre living, provides beautiful, new affordable homes comprising a mix of accessible accommodation and larger family homes. The site will provide one and two bedroom flats, three bedroom family homes, three bedroom homes suitable for wheelchair users and homes suitable for older people.

Built in partnership with Mactaggart & Mickel Contracts, an award-winning housebuilder, and supported by £1.794m of funding from the Scottish Government, work commenced on site in November 2013.

Councillor Douglas Reid, Leader of the Council was joined by Councillors Alan Brown and Tom Cook to view the soon to be completed homes. He said: “The West Langland Street site is a really ambitious build with 39 new homes being built on the site of the former cattle market. It is like an oasis in the heart of the town centre. When you walk onto the site, it feels like a gated community, very quiet and peaceful. This has probably been the biggest transformation of any housing site to date, on the site of the old cattle market which has lain derelict for years.

“This whole area was at one time a thriving industrial scene, with the former cattle market just metres away from Andrew Barclay’s Calendonia Works. Demolished in 2009, the cattle market site will soon be thriving once again with new tenants moving in.

“Throughout East Ayrshire over 200 affordable homes are being built, providing specially designed new homes for elderly and disabled residents. The tenants I have visited at the sites already completed find their new homes life changing and I know that West Langland Street will be no different. Just minutes from the town centre, the train station and the new college site, this development will change lives while regenerating a key town centre location.”

Pete Shepherd, director at Mactaggart & Mickel Contracts, commented: “The team on site have worked extremely hard over the last year to deliver on this contract and I’m pleased to say that the homes will be handed over next month, on programme.

“The completion of these units for East Ayrshire Council will represent another successful contract delivery by Mactaggart & Mickel Contacts in partnership with a local authority. We are actively growing our partnerships with local authorities and housing associations, and have a strong commitment to helping address the shortage of social housing in Scotland. I hope the homes at West Langlands will make a difference to the community and benefit residents for years to come.”

Councillor Reid also visited the Portland Street development in Kilmarnock this week with Councillor Alan Brown where 22 new homes are set to welcome tenants in May. The development at Portland Street will provide a mix of homes including 8 one bedroom flats, 12 two-bedroom flats as well as two homes for wheelchair users.

Councillor Reid said: “These developments have a multiple role to play; they provide housing, they employ local businesses providing work for local people and they encourage regeneration. I am looking forward to visiting this site again in May to view the completed homes, which are already looking very impressive.”

The homes at the Portland Street site are being built in partnership with McTaggart Construction and supported by £1.012m of funding from the Scottish Government; work commenced on site in March 2014.

Housing Minister Margaret Burgess said: “A record number of new council homes are being built in Scotland with the Scottish Government investing millions to make this happen.

“East Ayrshire Council has decided to build new homes, with a number of sites under construction across the region. That is good news for families that want access to high quality, affordable homes.

“The council has worked hard to maximise the benefits for its local economy by encouraging and supporting suppliers and sub-contractors to become involved in the developments.”

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