Helensburgh CHORD - information
Over the last few months questions have been asked about the future of the Comet lamp standards, and during the recent referendum of the Helensburgh CHORD Public Realm Improvement project, 40 comments were received regarding this matter.
The lighting design for the Square reflects the design brief, which was essentially to create a pedestrian friendly gathering place with the potential to host events. The proposed twin fitment lighting columns will provide the level of increased illumination required to both project light into the square and onto the carriageways. These lighting columns, together with uplighters, complement the new contemporary design of the square and together will create an attractive, safe, and vibrant space.
The comet light standards by contrast are Victorian in design, do not provide the desired level of illumination and are not as energy efficient. Based on previous experience the reuse of any street lighting columns that have been in place for this length of time, is extremely risky. A recent review of the columns has raised questions regarding their structural integrity, for example, the lantern components are badly corroded, the embellishments require repair etc.
When the columns have been removed from the Square a fuller structural and electrical assessment will be undertaken before a decision on the future of the lamp standards is taken.
Following the result of the Referendum held on the 25 June 2012 to progress with Option 3, the CHORD Project Team have, in conjunction with the CHORD Project Board, considered the responses from the completed Comments Cards and have subsequently enhanced the design whilst retaining the key elements of the design i.e. sq m area of soft landscaping and the straight road. The bus stops will remain in West Princes, as shown in option 1 and 2, as there was no clear preference expressed on this but slightly more people voted for that location.
In progressing the Option 3 design the following issues have been addressed to reflect views expressed in the Comment Cards:
- Increased seasonal flowerbeds
- Increased the number of seats with backs
- Located seats within close proximity/view of bus stops
- Introduced small Evergreen trees and evergreen hedging
- Introduced more desired crossing paths
It is clear from the comments received that some people were unaware that the design has addressed the following issues:
- Strengthened the symmetry of the existing Square
- Increased the number of disabled parking spaces directly adjacent to the Square
- Slightly increased the overall number of car park spaces in the CHORD boundary area
- Introducing a new signalised pedestrian crossing on West King St adjacent to Colquhoun Street to allow the elderly better access to Square
- Retained the existing monuments in their current location within the Square
- Introduced Traffic calming throughout the CHORD project area through design and reduction in traffic speeds from 30 mph to 20 mph (except on West Clyde St)
- Enhance the roads, pavement and car parking surfaces/appearance and durability within the CHORD Project boundary area
- CHORD monies being used to enhance the sea front.
- Project Team consulted with disabled group during the initial consultation and received letter of support for the design .
In addition to the above some people expressed support for retaining/ reuse of the existing lamp standards – the statement above explains the position with the lamp standards.
Views were also expressed on the need to spend money on shop fronts and for redeveloping the Pier head site including provision of facilities for young people - the Council has secured funding to assist in addressing both of these issues.