The £25 million Clyde Gateway (the East End Regeneration Route) opened to traffic on Thursday 26 April 2012. It is a key piece of infrastructure associated with Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company and the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and the expectation is it will bring jobs and economic advantage to the East End of Glasgow – Shawfield and Dalmarnock in particular – by improving accessibility.
The four-lane, 2.6km carriageway links the Oatlands and the M74 junction at Polmadie in the south to the Forge Retail Park in the north. Designed by Gronmij and built through a joint venture between Farrans and I&H Brown, it will give easy access to Celtic Park, where the opening ceremony of the Commonwealth Games will be held, the Commonwealth Arena, Sir Chris Hoy Velodrome and the Athletes’ Village.
This will be a critical route to transport some of the 18,000 athletes and support staff and hundreds of thousands of spectators expected during the Games. Afterwards, the roadway will be a legacy for the benefit of the local community.
Traffic congestion on existing local roads should also ease, especially during peak times. Recent traffic modelling studies have shown that there will be a reduction in traffic across the major east/west arteries crossing road around London Road and Gallowgate and in association with the new M74 link, this will free up road space to allow for additional walking, cycling and bus routes to be put in place.
Phase 1 of the road opened in April 2007 as part of the development of new housing in the Oatlands area and was officially re-named- New Rutherglen Road. Phase 1A followed in April 2010, running from the Polmadie junction of the M74 and Shawfield Stadium. This stretch totals 1.5km.
Phase 2 is the longest section, crossing the Clyde at Rutherglen Bridge and passing Dalmarnock Railway Station, the Commonwealth Arena and Celtic Park before joining the Parkhead by-pass at the Forge Retail Park
Brian Devlin, Executive Director for Land and Environmental Services said: ‘The Clyde Gateway creates a new, direct link between the completed M74 and the heart of Glasgow’s East End. This will offer fantastic new opportunities for people and business either currently living or based in this part of Glasgow or looking to move there. This is part of the wider regeneration of the city.
Neil MacDonald, Chairman of Clyde Gateway Urban Regeneration Company said: ‘The M74 has already shown that new roads play a very important part in businesses choosing where to make crucial investment decisions and there is no doubt that Shawfield and Dalmarnock in particular will benefit from this new piece of infrastructure. Our on-going efforts to attract developers to the East End have been helped immensely by this road opening and I’d like to thank Glasgow City Council for again demonstrating their commitment to the long-term regeneration of the Clyde Gateway area.’
Prior to the formal opening when traffic started flowing, children from four primary schools in the east end were given the chance to try out the newest section of the road.
More than 100 Primary 6 and 7 pupils from St Michael’s, St Anne’s, Dalmarnock and Quarrybrae primary schools cycled around an obstacle course set up on part of the new tarmac running from new Oatlands over Rutherglen Bridge, through Dalmarnock to Gallowgate.
The children experienced, first hand, the road’s new cycling facilities including dedicated cycle lanes and extended footpaths that are provided along the full length of the route.
They also got the chance to brush up on their safety skills with Glasgow City Council road safety officers and Strathclyde Police cyclists and motorcyclists. Dr Bike offered advice on maintaining bikes and gave practical demonstrations to ensure they were fit for the road.
As well as providing better facilities for cyclists, the new road, funded entirely by the Council, will improve public transport links and accessibility around the East End.
With phase one opened as part of the Oatlands new neighbourhood development last year, phase two of the 2.4km stretch runs over Rutherglen Bridge, continues via Dunn Street, Poplin Street, Dalmarnock Road, Mordaunt Street, London Road and Camlachie to join the existing road network at the Parkhead by-pass, Forge Retail Park.
TheClydeGateway (Phase 2) Facts
1. More than 35,000tonnes of asphalt used to lay roads, footpaths and cycle ways.
2. 800m of 2.74m diameter tunnel used to alleviate storm water flooding.
3. More than 250 trees planted and 40,000 sq m of landscaping to the road corridor.
4. 10km of new drainage pipes installed for new roads.
5. 250 new traffic signal heads installed over seven junctions.
6. 330 new lighting columns.
7. Construction period 2 years (April 2010 to April 2012)
A full turn-out of candidates made for a lively hustings at Oatlands in the OCRC recently. Matched more than 3 to 1 by members of the audience, they were subjected to some searching questions on a variety of issues.
Organised by the newly formed Oatlands Community Council and ably chaired by its chairman Stuart Logue, it showed that old style debate has not been lost.
Each prospective candidate was given a few minutes to set out their case. From the audience the main issues were lack of a shop and a safe place for children to play. Said one local resident: ‘We want someone to come here and fight for these things that were promised years ago when development was first proposed. We’re still waiting.’
Incumbent Labour Party Councillor James Scanlon pointed out he was the only councillor in the Southside Central ward who had a regular surgery in Oatlands. Councillor Anne Marie Millar who switched from Labour to Independent just before the Council rose in advance of the election, told her audience she would be very happy to take on the local issues highlighted that night. She said: ‘It is all about people taking control.’
The Green Party candidate: Moira Crawford said she’d concentrate on the two issues people had raised about the lack of a shop and the lack of safe play space for children.
Organisers on behalf of the Coummunity Council agreed it was a quiet and calm meeting and enjoyable because of that.
The survivors are pictured (from left)David Jago (Lib Dems), Charles Bailie (Britannica supporter,,), Jean Douglas (Britannica candidate), Ian Beattie (Socialist Party) Mhairi Hunter (SNP) Ann Marie Millar (Independent) James Scanlon (Labour), Moira Crawford (Scottish Green), withStuart Logue, Chair standing at the back.
The OCRC is a busy community hub with an Open Day planned for Sunday 17 June, a fundraiser in August for a reunion of Oatlanders to record their Memories and interest from one of the city colleges in using the premises (near Bett’s show homes office) on a regular basis.
The Ladies of Oatlands who meet on a Wednesday for tea, conversation and a game of bingo, have raised more than £80 for destitute children in Rwanda.
Organiser Marie Reilly was crocheting a blanket when she first heard of volunteer Mary Millar going out to Rwanda to work with local projects. ‘I said then, I’d raffle the blanket when I finished it and give the proceeds to her for that work,’ said Marie.
And that’s what she did on Wednesday 11 April 2012. ‘We sold raffle tickets around in the community but mainly it was the pensioners who come on Wednesday afternoons to the OCRC (Oatlands Community Resource Centre who bought the tickets,’ ‘ she added.
The group heard how Mary works from dawn till dusk managing the projects which centre on street children and people with disabilities.
Marie is now gathering in more wool, knitting needles and crochet hooks and other craft supplies so that the Wednesday Ladies can run their own craft or art classes. ’All donations would be gratefully received,’ said Ann Marie.
A Glasgow sports club even older than Rangers, is also suffering hard times. Hutchesontown Bowling Club, founded in 1866 – seven years before the football club – is in dire straits. Said President William Whyte at the Oatlands clubhouse: ‘There are rumours around that we’re closed. But we’re not!’ With a team of other elected officials, he is working to save the club from extinction. Membership is currently 14 ladies and 23 men who are being confronted with years of apparently, unpaid bills.
Said Club Secretary Annmarie Lynch: ‘ I can speak about the accounts from August last year when I was elected, but not before then.’ So far, she has found debts of more than £30,000 for VAT, rates and rent. ‘Then there are the utilities which we’ve negotiated to pay back at £61 a month for gas instead of the £235 a week we were originally faced with; £100 for electricity a week and water at £50 a week.’ The working group has sought outside help to guide them through the mess. They have called an emergency annual meeting on Sunday 26 February as no annual general meeting was held last December as it should have been.
‘One recent Sunday the bar takings totalled £15.75,’ said President William. ‘We need to get membership up and get revenue into the Club and we need to know the entire Club will help to get Hutchesontown back on its feet.’
His wife, Past Lady President, Annie Whyte is currently Vice President of Glasgow Women’s Bowling Association. ‘This means that on 7 August we host the semi finals of the Association,’ said Annie. ‘This is the first time Hutchesontown Bowling Club has had this honour so we must have the greens ready. This Club used to be famous for its hospitality so we’re doing all we can to make sure these things can happen, properly,’ she said.
Men’s President William, Lady President Agnes, their daughter Annmarie Lynch who is Secretary of the Men’s Club and Margaret McAuley who is treasurer of the Ladies Club and other supporters are working to bring the club back from the brink of extinction. ‘We’re even thinking of writing to the Duke of Argyll who is the Club’s Honorary President,’ said Annmarie.
Eight of the twelve places on the newly formed Oatlands Community Council have been decided. They were people who were nominated. So, all eight were elected. This leaves one third of the seats on the new Community Council, vacant. The formal announcement will be made at a public meeting on Wednesday 21 December at 6pm in the Oatlands Community Resource Centre (OCRC) by the City’s independent returning Officer.
That meeting will also elect office bearers and nominate representatives to attend the Local Area Committee and the Community Planning meetings. The regulation funding to allow the Council to run its own affairs will be handed over then, too.
The new Community Councillors are: Jane Cawley; John Fallon; M. Lisa Gillen; Stuart Logue; Donna Motherwell; Tracy Noble; Marie Reilly; David Stewart.
One of the first things on their agenda could well be the allotments which are adjacent to the OCRC. ‘It is all doom and gloom here,’ says Margaret Kerr who is secretary of the Oatlands Leisure Gardens. ‘The new site is waterlogged. It was officially opened in September last year with lots of pomp and ceremony but this year we can’t get anyone to lay claim to it. The site was built on top of Wolseley Street and it has been admitted, verbally, that they only skimmed off the surface of the road and left the hard packed underlay intact. Plotholders have dug up potatoes which were water-logged and have lost fruit trees because they were growing in stagnant water. It looks like a very expensive job to fix as, I think, they would have to dig up the main path and instal deep drainage along the middle with drainage pipes leading to each plot. No one will take responsibility and we cannot even get a response from Glasgow City Council, the Department of the Regeneration Services, Bett Developments or local councillors who are responsible for the site.’
Added Margaret: ‘On top of this, the new site at Oatlands Gate, next to the Bowling Club,has ground to a halt. It was due to be completed in June 2011 but is still not open.’
Oatlands has taken on a new lease of life. A fresh committee running the former ‘blue hut’ has painted it white with help from local kids, residents and volunteers from the staff of LINK housing association. Now called Oatlands Community Resource Centre (OCRC) it is even being considered as a place to hold surgeries by local MSP Nicola Sturgeon who visited recently to meet everyone and hear about local issues including the lack of a shop or a safe play space for children.
The OCRC committee has fixed Friday 14 October as a fund raising race night in nearby Hutchesontown Bowling Club. With a disco and a buffet supper it should raise enough to keep the actitivies in the ‘white house’ going for the winter.
Among the plans are a pantomime- which is currently being worked on by regulars at the out of school activities programme alongside Gary, a professional actor from Theatre Ecole.
Kids’ hip hop classes in town are proving popular and kickboxing classes are about to start in the OCRC. The pensioners’ bingo sessions on a Wednesday are well attended. And a hallowe’en party is on the cards. A monthly on-line newsletter – the Gab – run by very youthful wannabee journalists can be read at the website: ocrc.org.uk They don’t pull their punches and have asked why the community doesn’t have a play park for children or a shop.
Said Lisa Gillen, the OCRC volunteer organiser: ‘We’ve had nothing but positive feedback to the painting of the place. And we were very grateful to the LINK staff for their support as well as the willing workers from the local community. They all did a good job in transforming the centre.’
The TOPS team in Oatlands have produced their first newsletter. The school aged, local children fancy being journalists. Under the guiding hand of volunteer media mentor, Colin Mackie, they have come up with a cracking headline story: ‘Where is our Park?’ Pictured in front of metal fencing and a tractor, the youngsters point out they have nowhere safe to play. The Richmond Park is across major, busy roads. So they are left to play around a building site. ‘That’s dangerous.’ they point out.
Glasgow City Council has been asked what has happened to the promises of 1998 and earlier when a shop, a children’s play area and the St Margaret’s church building were all going to be available for local residents. ‘We’re still waiting,’ said one disgruntled local person. When the Council responds their answer will be posted on this website.
Oatlands fundraising day
Sunday 14 AUGUST at 2 pm
There will be stalls selling all sorts of wonderful things, raffles tombola,
Also there will be a
bouncy castle, face painter, DJ, maybe some Hip Hop………..
All money raised is going towards activities for all and it helps keep our wee centre
open.. so please show your support and come along….it will be good fun for all!!!
all in OATLANDS COMMUNITY RESOURCE CENTRE – the blue hut!
As media empires fall, a new one is arising in Oatlands! The first editorial meeting of ‘The Gab’ was held in the Blue Hut on Friday 8 July when The Oatlands Press Gang got down to business. Photographed here, the TOP Gang decided what they’d like to see in the monthly Newsletter, agreed a title and fixed to produce it monthly.
Their first main story will be about…. well ….the www.localnewsglasgow won’t reveal their exclusive! Just get your copy when it comes hot off the press.