New homes for Braidbar Quarry site?

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Braidbar Quarry could be the subject of a new housing bid if council chiefs formally agree to enter negotiations this week.

Advanced Construction Group have drawn-up plans to work in partnership with the local authority to remediate the Giffnock site and create new homes.

Proposals to fence-off unsafe areas around the quarry could also be agreed, with £120,000 set to be taken from the authority’s repairs and renewals fund.

In a report, East Renfrewshire’s director of environment, Andrew Cahill said: “The remediation of the site remains a priority for the council and options, including housing and other uses, will continue to be investigated.

“The issues and dangers with regard to Braidbar are well-documented and have been the subject of previous reports in the past to the council.

“It is important to understand that the dangers of the site are not to be underestimated and the potential for a ground collapse as the natural sandstone pillars gradually wear away increases incrementally with time.”

Mr Cahill admitted that finding resources to make the quarry safe had been “extremely challenging”.

And he said new fencing was needed after Police Scotland found multiple areas where youths and dog walkers had found their way into the quarry.

He said those site breaches presented the council with a “liability issue”.

Councillors will be asked to agree to fence-off all of the council-owned part of the site while increasing inspection and maintenance visits.

And the possibility of closing the public right of way at the quarry is also expected to be explored.

Mr Cahill added: “The approach to the council by Advance Construction Group offers the council an opportunity, without any commitment, to explore the possibility of site remediation through a joint venture.”

The Advanced Construction Group plan comes seven years after the council entered into a joint venture with McDonald Estates to release part of the site for housing.

McDonald Estates pulled out of that work in 2011 and no more interest was shown by any developer until 2016 when Advanced Construction Group first signalled their intentions.

Informal talks have been ongoing since 2016 but the council has not made any commitments during that time.

Mining ceased around 1918, after which the quarries were infilled with foundry waste to restore the area to something approaching its original ground level.

Currently Giffnock North Sports Club own a clubhouse, car park and pitches on the north side of the quarry site.

The council has its Huntly Pavilion site at the south side of the quarry while the centre of the quarry is considered a no go zone due to the risk of collapse.