The various initiatives across the Stirling area which total £513,000 will include new cycle infrastructure, reduced speed limits, widened paths, artwork, signage and traffic calming measures.
After initially securing the funding for nine projects from Sustrans’ Spaces for People Fund, the Council consulted with the public and other key stakeholders for three weeks in October to ensure the proposals met the needs of communities.
Due to Covid-19 restrictions, this engagement took place via an online platform where residents could give their views on the plans and also suggest other projects that would benefit from the funding.
There were almost 500 responses to the exercise, including 176 in the community proposals option, and Council Officers then worked with Sustrans to draw up a finalised list based on criteria set by the fund and the Council.
The 16 projects which will now move to the implementation stage are located in Stirling, Bannockburn, Whins of Milton, Bridge of Allan, Dunblane, Aberfoyle, Callander, Plean, Fallin, Gargunnock and Killearn.
Details of all the projects can be found on the Stirling Council website.
Members of Stirling Council’s Environment and Housing Committee yesterday (20 January) noted a report on the finalised projects and the consultation exercise and agreed that the committee would be consulted on the allocation of any underspend.
Positive engagementConvener of the Committee, Cllr Jim Thomson said: “It was vital we engaged with communities across Stirling to ensure these projects met the needs of local people who know these areas better than anyone.
“The feedback from residents has proved invaluable in shaping the proposals, and it’s fantastic that nearly half of the successful schemes have been proposed by residents which is a sign of a positive engagement process.
“It shows this was the right thing to do and we will continue to engage with communities as work on these important projects gets underway.”
Spaces for People
Sustrans’ Spaces for People Fund was set up to bolster the local government response to the coronavirus pandemic.
The fund aims to make journeys safer for cycling, walking and wheeling during the Covid-19 pandemic in busy public areas where physically distancing is difficult, such as town centres, though temporary infrastructure improvements.
The planned projects for Stirling are targeted at boosting the area’s economic recovery from the current crisis in the important retail and tourism sectors by making it easier to walk, cycle and queue outside shops, whilst helping to keep people safe.
Engagement with communities on the approved plans will now take place, with delivery of the programme starting at the beginning of February.
Support Stirling’s recovery
Vice Convener, Cllr Danny Gibson added: “Covid-19 is unfortunately still very much a threat, particularly with the new variant that has emerged, but there is hope on the horizon and these projects will be a crucial part of our efforts to keep people safe and support Stirling’s recovery.
“We have listened to communities throughout the Stirling area during the engagement process and this is reflected in the list of approved proposals.
“I am delighted we are now ready to move to the next stage of the process so residents and businesses can benefit from these safe and welcoming environments as soon as possible.”
A report will be brought to the committee approximately 12 months after the completion of the final project to assess the success of all the schemes. Councillors will be kept updated in the interim period through a bulletin and briefing notes.
To view the report that was discussed at committee on 20 January, please click here.
A recording of the Environment and Housing Committee meeting is available to view on the Council’s YouTube channel.