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Shoreline Project, Bowmore, Islay

Urban Animation and Neil Sutherland Architects have been appointed by Islay Estates to masterplan expansion at the western edge of Bowmore, Islay. The Project will be the most significant development on the island since the construction of the original planned village at Bowmore in the 1770s. Islay Estates are seeking to create a modern legacy for the town and Islay as a whole. Most of the Islay villages are planned settlements, and all have largely retained their integrity despite some modern sprawl round their fringes. As a result, Islay has a strong building typology characterised by low rise traditional whitewashed buildings with slate roofs, often laid out in terraces built down and round slopes.

Unlike most of the Islay villages, Bowmore largely turns its back on the coastline. However, the Shoreline site is elevated and presents an opportunity to exploit panoramic views across Loch Indaal. The site of a former artillery battery from the Napoleonic Wars lies on a promontory immediately to the east, with views to the Paps of Jura. It is hoped this may provide a location for a focal building - perhaps a heritage or tourist use. Continue reading.....

The Shoreline Project aims to provide a mixed use development with housing, retail, hotel, community, heritage/tourism and business uses. The challenge will be to integrate the new development with the existing settlement, respecting the historic street pattern and architecture whilst creating a development which is of its time. Initial consultations have highlighted a number of land use and circulation issues which might be addressed in part by the Project. These include a pedestrian / vehicular conflict zone between the secondary and primary schools.

Given the remote setting and unusual constraints in bringing forward new development, it is essential that partnership opportunities are maximised. The Project will require support from the private, public and community sectors to achieve its full potential. There is a wealth of local initiative to draw upon and it is hoped this can contribute towards the delivery of a sustainable and successful long term development.

Richard Heggie of Urban Animation told the 'Ileach'; “This is just the very beginning of the project, and we want to show local people our proposals and to hear everybody’s ideas. We plan to hold public consultation days in Islay in early November, to hear people’s views about what would be useful for Bowmore village, and for the island as a whole.” Urban Animation / Neil Sutherland Architects is also now appointed to bring forward development of allocated housing land at Keills on Islay, also owned by Islay Estate.

For more information check out the Urban Animation website.

This story was published with kind permission of the Ileach local newspaper.

Tag: housing bowmore keills islay estate

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