SFT Media

2019

Value of community projects in development jumps £150m

- Latest figures show total value of hub projects has broken through £3bn -

Small and medium-sized businesses and local communities spread across Scotland are set to benefit as latest figures published by infrastructure specialists the Scottish Futures Trust (SFT), show the value of new community projects in development through the Scotland-wide hub programme has risen from £600m to £750m in the last three months.

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The hub programme, which is managed by SFT, is based on a partnership (known as a hubCo) being established between a group of public sector organisations and private sector construction companies to deliver new community facilities. There are five hubCos covering the whole of Scotland, each taking a long-term planning approach to identify local infrastructure needs to support the delivery of improved community services.

Health centres, affordable rent housing, schools with built-in community facilities and nurseries are just some of the new projects identified in the June 2019 hub pipeline that are in the planning stage to be built for councils and health boards across Scotland.

David MacDonald, hub programme director at SFT, explained: “The hub programme is a unique way to develop and deliver best-value community facilities that provide public bodies with a quick and efficient way of getting their projects into construction.

“To date, projects valued at just under £2bn have been completed and are open to serve their communities. Projects valued at £500m are under construction and £750m of projects are in the development stage.

“The benefit of using hub as the preferred delivery partner is clear to see from the huge increase in new projects entering the development stage.  With SMEs being awarded around 80% of hub construction contracts, this secures many thousands of local jobs and training opportunities and enhances local economic wellbeing.”

A selection of projects being developed in the £750m pipeline, include:

  • The £17.6m Prestwick Educational Campus for South Ayrshire Council
  • The £18.8m Torry Community Campus for Aberdeen City Council
  • £20m investment in four nurseries by East Dunbartonshire Council
  • £31m in an affordable housing project for North Ayrshire Council
  • The £17.5m St Brendan’s Community Hospital and Care Home project for NHS Western Isles and Western Isles Council
  • The £46m Perth High School for Perth & Kinross Council
  • The £60m Winchburgh schools project for West Lothian Council

Donald Gillies, Director of Place at South Ayrshire Council, said: “HubSW has been engaged to deliver further significant further education investment in South Ayrshire. Development work has started on new facilities in Maybole and Prestwick with an approximate value of £65m. This builds further on the partnership we have with hubSW in project development and delivery and I look forward to another successful outcome benefitting both local communities and businesses.”

CMS Window Systems based in Cumbernauld is one of the many hundreds of small to medium-sized businesses appointed onto the hub supply chain. It operates within the heart of its local community and over the years has helped well over 100 young people gain modern apprenticeship qualifications. CMS recruits around a dozen young people each year into its Apprentice Academy where they follow a 60-week structured training programme, with the goal of receiving formal qualifications and becoming full-time members of staff.

David Ritchie, the company’s chief executive said: “Being on the hub supply chain provides us with a greater insight to potential future work. This then allows us to plan our resources accordingly, so we can recruit more local people.

“Such has been our success, that we have recently opened a third new factory in East Kilbride which complements our current production facilities in Kirkcaldy and at our HQ in Cumbernauld. This new factory is allowing us to expand our product range and employ many more local people and apprentices.”