Three options for a central square in Helensburgh

‘Option 1’ is the original proposal, which was enormously controversial in Helensburgh.

Three potential options for the future of Colquhoun Square in Helensburgh have been revealed – less than a week before an ‘informal referendum’ is held.

The vote will be held on Monday June 25 between 8am and 8pm in the main hall at the Victoria Halls in Helensburgh; the current layout is not one of the options.

The three options can be seen on the council’s website, at Scotcourt House in Helensburgh and at the town’s library. They will also be available to see at the swimming pool and in Colquhoun Square itself as well as in the Victoria Halls on the day of the referendum.

All residents aged 18 or above on the day of the poll, and who live in the council’s Helensburgh and Lomond area of Argyll, will be able to take part in the referendum.

A council statement said: “As Helensburgh is the major town in the area, those from Cardross to the Rosneath peninsula, Arrochar and all places between and beyond within this part of Argyll and Bute can take part whether by voting at the Victoria Halls on the day or by submitting a comment on their preferred option.

“Voters will be asked to choose one of the options when they vote. You can comment by post, e-mail, online or at the Victoria Halls, before the poll closes on June 25, whether or not you choose to vote in the referendum.

“The council will consider how to progress the Public Realm Improvement works in Colquhoun Square after the referendum and comments made have been taken on board. The three options are complex to deliver which will result in different project completion dates.”

Option one is the original proposal, while option two is intended to increase green space in the square square,

Option two would increase green space – it is shown here without bus stops being included.

Voters will also be offered a comment card which will have a question on their preferred location for the bus stops and shelters and their suggested improvements to their chosen option. The council says this is “both a positive process of choosing a preferred option and suggesting further potential improvements”

The third option features straight roads, with increased green space (shown with bus stops this time).

.Helensburgh and Lomond area committee lead councillor James Robb was an outspoken critic of the original pla.

He said: “It was important before moving forward with the Public Realm Improvement (CHORD) Project to make a final effort to achieve a better consensus on an acceptable design for Colquhoun Square.

“It has been a remarkable achievement that council officers have arranged this in such a short time. This is a final opportunity for all voters in the area to shape the future of this key part of the town. If you cannot attend on Monday please send in your comments as directed in the notice sent to each household. However, I hope as many residents as possible will respond positively to the opportunity presented and come along to the Victoria Halls to record their view.”

If there are any doubts about the eligibility of anyone to participate in the process due to age, residence or another reason then polling staff will ask for evidence of eligibility to vote.

The council statement did not say what form this evidence could take, but contact details were listed: Douglas Hendry, executive director of customer services, Argyll and Bute Council, Kilmory, PA31 8RT;  e-mail: helensburghchordreferendum@argyll-bute.gov.uk. Online at http://www.argyll-bute.gov.uk/helensburghchordreferendum

1 Comment

  1. Option three is clearly the best on offer for the Square – it will still be attractive & identifiable. We must insist upon the Comet Lamps being retained – if the argument for better lighting is sustainable then some supplementary floods can be discreetly fitted at each corner.
    My main gripe remains the waste of money tarting up the front – it will be washed away as usual in the first winter storm. Spend £1.5 million on the square and leave the rest in the bank for something more worthwhile – perhaps 5% towards qualifying for Heritage Lottery funding to refurbish our poor Hermitage Park?

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