Ambitions for Doon Valley Community Campus start to take shape

Early plans for the new Doon Valley Community Campus in Dalmellington are starting to take shape, as officers set out ambitious objectives for the development of the project and the local community will be given a chance to find out more at an online engagement event next week.

The preferred location for the new £30 million Doon Valley Community Campus is the site of the current Doon Academy, Dalmellington Primary School and Early Childhood Centre, the Doon Valley Leisure Centre and the site of the existing Dalmellington Area Centre.

There is a collective vision for this Campus to become the ‘beating heart of the community’ and community engagement will sit at the heart of these proposals.  Following some early discussions with local stakeholders, the project will focus on sustainability, education, wellbeing and economic growth and these concepts will be shared with the community next week.

The inclusive design approach being applied to the project will maximise opportunities for sharing facilities that support education, health and wellbeing, sports excellence, the arts, culture and events, community integration and lifelong learning. The campus design will reflect the extended needs of the local community and it will be sympathetic to the natural environment, history and heritage of the surrounding area.

It will provide:

  • educational accommodation for 280 secondary, 110 primary, 60 early years, 40 secondary, 10 primary supported learning and 10 ASN;
  • specific vocational learning accommodation for senior pupils
  • flexible workspaces for any public services (local authority, healthcare, emergency services) that are based in or visiting the local area;
  • outdoor educational and recreational spaces for all;
  • a sensory therapeutic garden, connecting the indoor and outdoor settings;
  • civic accommodation including customer reception, multi-purpose space for civic functions, clinical, counselling or therapeutic sessions, third sector commissioned services and a small enterprise café;
  • a community hub environment for improved intergenerational interactions from babies to older people;
  • indoor and outdoor leisure and recreational facilities that support community wellbeing and the current and future sports curriculum for secondary, primary, and early years and also the wider community, promoting physical activity as the natural and easy choice for pupils, staff and visitors. Facilities will include swimming pool, fitness suite, boxing ring, multipurpose fitness studio and a hub for outdoor activity.
  • Opportunities to promote and encourage links to tourism

The development will meet the very highest building standards in terms of sustainability that will achieve and potentially exceed, current prescribed sustainability/energy performance targets.

The project will maximise opportunities for  local employment and community wealth building, as it aims to increase the flow of investment into the local economy by developing environmentally sustainable joint procurement opportunities with the local supply chain. This will also include working with the community to develop cooperatives and locally owned or socially minded enterprises within the local economy.

As is the case with other council capital investment projects of this nature, the project will be led by a team of suitably qualified professionals from service within East Ayrshire Council, making up a dedicated Project Delivery Team for the Doon Valley Community Campus, with additional support from other internal departments as required.

Following extensive procurement process and thereafter, planning, construction is expected to commence summer 2023, with the new school scheduled for completion in time for pupils to start August 2025.

The local community event will take place online on Wednesday 14 April 6.30pm – 8pm. To register your interest at the event, please email: vibrantcommunities@east-ayrshire.gov.uk