27 February, 2017 - 13:35

This cash windfall is a once in a lifetime opportunity to bring together citizens, the voluntary and social enterprise sectors, businesses and public agencies to develop an inspiring, forward looking, broader vision for the town. Kirsten Robb

South Lanarkshire Greens are calling on the council's City Deal capital projects to be scrapped and the process started again to ensure the money is spent on projects that reflect the real needs and aspirations of local people.

The Glasgow and Clyde Valley City Deal has been funded by UK, Scottish and local government. As part of the deal, South Lanarkshire Council are promoting £100 million of road expansion projects at the Cathkin bypass, the Stewartfield Way and fly over at Nerston and finally the part dualling of the Strathaven and Greenhills Roads.

After visiting the recent public event about the work to be undertaken on the Strathaven and Greenhills roads ( see image above or click more detailed images from the exhibition), Green council candidate (EK East), Kirsten Robb, has raised concerns about the extreme lack of consultation on City Deal projects and is recommending that the road expansion schemes are shelved. She says that a much more open and inclusive process should be started to identify projects that benefit local people and the local economy to a far greater extent.

"This cash windfall is a once in a lifetime opportunity to bring together citizens, the voluntary and social enterprise sectors, businesses and public agencies to develop an inspiring, forward looking, broader vision for the town. I'm disappointed that South Lanarkshire Council did not take this opportunity, but instead are revisiting road projects trawled up from the past. The event last week was the first time the public have had any input into the City Deal process. Even now, I was told that the plans would not be available on line but are expected to go to committee for approval in April. This is simply too late and not good enough for any council wishing to be transparent, outward looking and utlimately, successful.

However, it's not too late, for East Kilbride at least. Other authorities have taken a better approach and a wider view of economic development. Stirling, for example, have funded projects such as new public transport and active travel links, small business and social enterprise spaces, housing, a city park and a cultural quarter.

East Kilbride has numerous challenges but also major opportunities with our college and business expertise in modern, green and digital technology. These challenges and opportunities can only be addressed by a better, more open response to City Deal - and we will all reap the rewards. Projects like a massive expansion of social housing, schemes to eliminate fuel poverty, affordable spaces for new enterprises, and investment in public transport, walking and cycling networks are just a few areas that will create lasting jobs, tackle poverty and improve health whilst improving the local economy. It's time to scrap these road expansion projects and start again."

Click here to see more detailed images from the exhibition

Get involved

More like this

Message to first time voters

Kirsten Robb Fri 28 Apr

Next Thursday will be the first time that 16 and 17 year olds will be able to vote in local council elections. I want young peoples voice to be heard loud and clear at this election. Your vote really matters. I am asking you to Vote Green next Thursday and send a message to politicians that they need to do more to help you build a better future for yourself and other young people.

A message to the voters of East Kilbride

Kirsten Robb Fri 28 Apr

Your council services matter. This local election is a vital choice between starving them of funds, selling them off or investing in them to make all our communities better. Greens are dedicated to protecting and improving public services into the future.

East Kilbride was a pioneering town with a bright future and all six of our Scottish Green Party candidates will work hard to make sure it is again. The Green vision for EK is a place where everyone has a secure home, where there are good job opportunities, high quality public services and a pleasant environment.

East Kilbride transport is a mess - we deserve better

Kirsten Robb Tue 25 Apr

Is it any wonder that EK trains are overcrowded and Hairmyres Hospital staff are forced to form a human chain to stop commuters parking in patients car parks?