Published 11 August 2023

A major industrial and commercial development proposed for West Dunbartonshire has been approved after consideration by City Deal officials.

The full business case for the £44m project was submitted to the Glasgow City Region Cabinet this week.

It outlined how the ExxonMobil site in Bowling will be transformed into a mixed-use development, with storage, distribution, industrial, business and office space.

The project will also include a number of road improvements connecting to the site, including the addition of a 1.95km relief road through West Dunbartonshire.

Of the 150 acre site, 47 acres is planned for development, with green network and green infrastructure enhancements including a waterfront pedestrian and cycle path being proposed.

In addition, a heritage area has been identified around listed structure Dunglass Castle.

Following the final seal of approval, West Dunbartonshire Council can now progress with the project, which is expected to provide up to 980 full time jobs as well as an additional 660 jobs during the construction stage.

It is expected to bring £43.8m of additional private investment, and £520.8m net additional GVA by 2037.

Council Leader, Councillor Martin Rooney, said: “This approval from the City Region cabinet brings us another step closer to delivering on this hugely ambitious project, which will benefit our area for years to come.

“This project is expected to bring a huge amount of jobs in our area, as well as a return 26 times greater than our investment, which will be fantastic for West Dunbartonshire and the City Region as a whole.

“Residents will also see the benefits of a site which has been lying idle for years coming back into productive use, as well as the introduction of a much-needed relief road, providing an alternative route for traffic between Milton Junction and Dunglass Roundabout, and public access to greenspace areas at the site.”

Detailed plans will go to a future Planning Committee for consideration. 

The Glasgow City Region City Deal is an agreement between the UK Government, the Scottish Government and eight Local Authorities across Glasgow and the Clyde Valley.

Scottish Government Wellbeing Economy Secretary Neil Gray said: “I welcome this significant step forward in a project which could, upon completion, release millions of pounds of private investment and create jobs.

“This progress is another example of the valuable work conducted with Scottish Government support through the Glasgow City Region City Deal.”

UK Government Minister for Scotland Malcolm Offord said: "These transformative plans for the ExxonMobil site will bring jobs and investment, drive economic renewal and deliver green infrastructure that will benefit the community for years to come.  

"The UK Government is investing £12m in the project, and more than £850m in levelling up across the Glasgow City Region with new initiatives like the Investment Zone and Innovation Accelerator."