Plans approved to redevelop John Brown shipyard

Plans to redevelop the John Brown shipyard in Clydebank and create a new “civic heart” for the area have been given the go ahead by West Dunbartonshire Councillors.

The council’s planning committee granted planning permission in principle for the Queens Quay masterplan, presented by site owners Clydeside Regeneration Limited (CRL).

The John Brown yard built many famous ships including the Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth, Queen Elizabeth 2, Lusitania, HMS Hood and HMS Repulse.

Provost Douglas McAllister, vice convener of planning, said: “John Brown’s shipyard built some of the world’s most famous ships and now we are set to breathe new life into this key site.

“Bankies have a strong affinity with the yard and I’m delighted that we will now be opening it up for the whole community to enjoy.

“As well as creating around 1,000 homes across the whole development, which will improve local housing opportunities, it will also provide a state-of-the-art care home and health centre for the people of Clydebank.”

The centerpiece of the development — which would include housing, retail and leisure outlets, and a health quarter — would be the refurbished fitting out basin and Titan Crane visitor attraction.

It is hoped a District Heating Scheme will be created that would be powered by energy from the river basin.

“At long last this represents the regeneration of John Brown’s shipyard,” Paul O’Donnell, representing CRL, told the committee.

“We aim to create an esplanade along the entire frontage of the Clyde and round the basin, opening up this area of Clydebank to the whole community for the first time.

“Our aspiration is to create a development that’s a little bit different from other major urban regeneration projects, with high design standards at its heart.

“This development will undoubtedly grow the local economy and will become a focal point for the community to use.”

The redevelopment would complement existing facilities at Queens Quay, including the council’s offices at Aurora House and a new £23.5 million leisure centre due to open early next year.

It would take more than 10 years to fully develop the 23 hectare site.

“This will be the most significant development in Clydebank for a generation and I’m delighted to see it moving to the next stage,” said councillor Lawrence O’Neill, convener of planning.

“We have an opportunity to make this an extremely unique place, which will bring benefits to the whole of Clydebank and attract more people to visit our great town.

“The plans that we have agreed to approve will help to create a new civic heart for Clydebank, which is extremely exciting.”