A MAJOR £17.5m housing development is taking shape at Greenock's historic James Watt Dock.

River Clyde Homes’ first waterfront development, which will deliver 137 affordable rented homes, is beginning to rise from the ground.

The development comprises 67 one-bedroom and 70 two-bedroom flats.

The housing association says the spacious site, overlooking the iconic Sugar Sheds, will provide much needed modern, energy efficient homes.

Eight are being built in partnership with Blackwood Housing Association and are designed for customers with additional housing needs.

Inverclyde MSP Stuart McMillan visited the site for a tour this week.

Mr McMillan said: “I welcome this development, which will bring 137 new affordable homes onto the market.

“Providing more affordable homes is a crucial part of the Scottish Government’s aim to create a fairer Scotland, and improve communities through inclusive growth.

"The government is firmly on track to deliver the target of 50,000 affordable homes by 2021, and this development forms part of that effort.

“What’s more, this unique development will offer breathtaking views across the Clyde and will hopefully invite tenants from outside of Inverclyde.

"We live in a beautiful part of Scotland, with so much to boast, so I’m delighted that River Clyde Homes is working hard to deliver high-quality, affordable homes, adding to the offering locally.”

Marilyn Beveridge, vice-chair of the RCH board, hopes that the development could attract people into the area.

She told the Tele: “We are committed to building much needed new homes in Inverclyde that meet the needs of our residents.

"We also hope that we can contribute to the plans to grow the population of the area.

"This is just the first of two major developments we are undertaking - the other, at the former St Stephen’s High School site in Port Glasgow, will begin soon.”

The development is supported by the Scottish Government, designed by Chameleon Architects and constructed by Cruden Building.

Allan Callaghan, managing director of Cruden, said: “Cruden Building has successfully completed several housing developments throughout Inverclyde on behalf of River Clyde Homes. We are pleased to be working on another landmark development as we transform a vacant site.

“We are working closely with local companies, providing four apprenticeships, creating valuable work placements and training opportunities and providing donations to local community groups to leave a lasting legacy within Inverclyde.”

The first homes are scheduled to be ready in spring 2021 with the entire development completed later that year.

Councillor Robert Moran, one of the elected members for Inverclyde East Central, the ward in which the new homes are being built, added: “It’s fantastic to see River Clyde Homes delivering on its promise to build much needed new homes in the east end of Greenock.

"It’s a landmark site and will help transform the area.”

* River Clyde Homes is inviting expressions of interest for the new development. Contact 0800 013 2196 or complete the online form at the RCH website.


From left to right are Councillor Robert Moran, Kevin Scarlett, chief executive of RCH, Stuart McMillan MSP, Marilyn Beveridge and Allan Callaghan.