The plans will see a new leisure centre and swimming pool opened in the town to replace the existing facility, which will be demolished. The project also features associated parking and a coach drop-off, as well as public realm works aimed at meeting the needs of the local community and attracting day visitors to the town.
Another key aspect of the project will be the improvement of the waterfront flood defences. The proposal also safeguards space for a potential future development of retail units, possible play park and skate park facilities, together with improved landscaping at the waterfront.
A pre-planning public consultation process saw more than 1,300 responses gathered. As a result, officers and councillors needed extra time to examine and consider all of the views put forward.
Councillor Ellen Morton, chair of the Helensburgh and Lomond Area committee, said: “We are thrilled that the committee voted to grant planning permission for this project and that the people of Helensburgh will finally have the new swimming pool and leisure facility that it so badly needs. There has been a lot of discussion over this project and a lot of strong opinions aired. However, we are confident that today’s decision will deliver a facility that will be of great value to the community. I can’t wait to see work begin at the site.”
Proposals for the new Helensburgh Waterfront were launched with an outline business case in 2008. In 2017, Darnton B3 Architects was appointed to develop the design of the leisure facility and swimming pool and the public realm areas, working with engineers from Argyll and Bute Council, who designed the car park and flood defences.