Published 01 February 2019
Work has begun on the first phase of an ambitious project which will see major improvements to Balloch.
The plans will transform the area’s public spaces, create a sense of arrival for visitors and improve connections for pedestrians and cyclists from public transport to attractions.
The initial development will see the construction of a new village square on Balloch Road beside Moss O‘Balloch Park.
Changes include wider paving in certain sections to enhance space and introduce the possibility for a café culture and seating areas.
Narrower roads will lower average speeds of vehicles and discourage illegal parking, with official parking spaces incorporated into the design. Priority will also be given to pedestrians and cyclists, while ensuring a steady flow of traffic.
Other improvements will be seen to street furniture and signage.
Councillor Iain McLaren, Convener of Infrastructure, Regeneration and Economic Development, was joined by Leader of the Council, Councillor Jonathan McColl as the first sod was cut at the site.
He said: “This marks the beginning of a very exciting project for Balloch and one that will transform the way it looks and feels to residents and visitors.
“As a gateway to the National Park and Loch Lomond, Balloch already draws guests from all over the world, and the improvements that will come about as part of this project are sure to enhance tourism even further.
“This will have a significant beneficial impact on businesses and is likely to encourage start-ups to consider the area in the future.
“The square is a vital part of this project because I have no doubt that it will encourage community events like markets and performances, and give the village a definite focal point.”
Cllr McNair added: “I am delighted to be here today to see work beginning on this important development.
“This project was born at the Live in Balloch Charette in 2016 and I hope residents here can see their ideas for improving the area starting to come to fruition.
“When this work in completed, Balloch will be transformed for the better and I look forward to seeing it progress.”
Work commenced on site on January 21 and traffic management measures, including some periods of road closures, will be in place around the area.
The second phase will be focused on Station Square – a public square at Balloch train station. Other recent and current works in Balloch include extension of the Moss O’Balloch parking, improvements to Balloch Road (West) and resurfacing works.
The project is being delivered in partnership with Loch Lomond and The Trossachs National Park.