EAST Renfrewshire’s Balgray Reservoir has been lowered to carry out ‘vital’ maintenance work ahead of a £19.5 million transformation of the Dams to Darnley Country Park.
Scottish Water dropped the reservoir level by almost seven metres to carry out the planned essential works and enable East Renfrewshire Council to create a walking and cycling path from Newton Means to Barrhead – which includes a promenade boardwalk along the banks of the water.
The utility firm said that the reservoir will now be maintained at its current level while the planned dam maintenance and major redevelopment of the wider park takes place. Included in the £19.5 million project is the build of a visitor centre, as well as toilets strategically placed throughout the park.
Works on the project are expected to start in early spring 2023, due to ‘unforeseen’ delays. Scottish Water explained that keeping the reservoir at its current level means that the fish population will not expand, with a ‘small number’ having already been transferred to a nearby reservoir – with special mitigations being put in place to protect the remaining fish over the summer.
Mark Petrie, Scottish Water’s critical asset maintenance manager, said, “People have already begun to notice that the reservoir is sitting very low, and they might not see a lot of activity for an extended period. We wanted to reassure everyone that we haven’t used Balgray Reservoir as a drinking water source for many years and this is a planned activity.
“Scottish Water needs to carry out dam maintenance works on the reservoir and our collaboration with East Renfrewshire Council on their city deal project, means both of these major projects will be carried out at the same time, causing the least disruption to the public.”