Paisley Town Centre Regeneration
"The team at SLR were exceptional in the development and delivery of work that was a step-change for the direction and ambitions of Paisley’s regeneration approach and strategy”. (Stuart McMillen, Regeneration Manager, Renfrewshire Council , May 2020)
The SLR planning and regeneration team were appointed to prepare a cultural assets-based strategy and masterplan for Paisley Town Centre. The project required multidisciplinary consultancy skills, bringing together the best in regeneration planning, urban design, conservation and heritage expertise, cultural tourism specialists, funding, market analysis and promotion, as well as stakeholder and community engagement specialists.
The strategy prioritised intervention in relation to assets considered most vulnerable to decline, identifying re-use options and projects that would increase footfall and pollinate areas where most significant decay and vacancy levels were evident. The Action Plan involved some £120M of new capital investment drawn from resources from the Scottish Government, HLF, Creative Scotland, the Community Planning partners, international cultural foundations and the private sector. The strategy recommended Paisley’s bid to become Scotland’s nomination for the UK’s City of Culture in 2021. SLR was retained to advise on the implementation strategy until 2019.
"It has been a pleasure working with SLR Consulting (led by Paul McTernan, Aislinn O’Brien and Esther Haller Clarke) on the Paisley Town Centre Regeneration Strategy, the outcome of which could be game-changing for Paisley. Their work offers us the potential to build a sustainable development strategy based on the architectural and cultural significance of Paisley. Their comprehensive approach to stakeholder engagement has resulted in a strategy that reflects the contributions made by the people of Paisley as it aims to tackle the physical, social and economic regeneration of the town centre. The study has unearthed an exciting future using the audience power of its remarkable built heritage and the vibrancy from its arts community and impressive performing arts sector. Getting the right team to deliver this strategy was crucial. SLR came with the correct mix of expertise which allowed us an improved understanding of the cultural assets in our ownership and their visitor potential. It’s not every day that we discuss World Heritage Site benchmarking in Renfrewshire, the impact of the SLR team has been quite striking. Their planning approach to the town centre was fresh and ambitious yet provided a clear and manageable route to achieving the long-term regeneration goals. They brought a confidence to our team and opened our eyes to the untapped potential that exists in our town.
The Strategy prepared by SLR has provided the council with a clearly defined long-term ambition for Paisley town centre. Their approach included a working visit to Belfast and Derry-Londonderry to engage with colleagues who have recently undertaken the task we now face. This visit has been invaluable, and the introductions made there have developed into a strong network of support and guidance." (Mary Crearie, Director of Development and Housing Services, Renfrewshire Council)