Housing minister sees planning policy in action

Andrew Mickel (Mactaggart & Mickel), Kevin Stewart MSP and Bruce Mickel (Mactaggart & Mickel)

SCOTLAND’S housing minister has paid a visit to the award-winning Polnoon neighbourhood in Eaglesham, East Renfrewshire, which has been inspired by the Scottish Government’s planning policy.

Kevin Stewart MSP viewed the development of 124 energy-efficient homes, which was the result of a collaboration between Mactaggart & Mickel Homes, architects Proctor and Matthews, roads engineers Waterman Boreham Transport, East Renfrewshire Council and The Scottish Government.

Polnoon was heavily influenced by the Scottish Government’s design advice, outlined in their “Creating Places” and “Designing Streets” policies. The development prioritises pedestrians over cars and encourages interaction amongst residents by way of interconnected shared areas including courts, a central square and children’s play parks.

Polnoon has won several housing design awards, including a Saltire Design Award for Innovation in Housing and Best Medium Development at the Homes for Scotland Awards. The final phase is due for completion later this year.

Scottish Government Minister for Local Government and Housing, Kevin Stewart said, “It’s great to be here in Polnoon today to see first-hand what can be achieved in a residential development where the focus is on designing quality housing, streets and public spaces. The Polnoon project has taken Scottish Government planning policy and applied it to show how it can work successfully; the result is an excellent sustainable design which enhances the environment for residents.

“Thanks to the attention to detail that has been given to how the streets and houses relate to each other, Polnoon is a neighbourhood that feels spacious, welcoming and significantly different to most other housing developments. I am confident that Polnoon will eventually become one of Scotland’s ‘Conservation Areas of Tomorrow’, which is one of the aims of the project.”

Andrew Mickel, director of Mactaggart & Mickel added, “We’re pleased to welcome the Minister to Polnoon, which is a development we are very proud of. It has been built to stand the test of time and is particularly unique, as it caters to the needs of pedestrians rather than vehicles. Polnoon showcases what can be achieved by taking a fresh approach to development design and focusing on community and sustainability.”