Drumsagard Village Environment and Landscape Review

8 July 2004 | blog, place making, strategy, working with communities

Drumsagard open space

In July of 2004 the Drumsagard Village Resident’s Association commissioned Willie Miller Urban Design and Drew Mackie Associates to carry out an environmental and landscape review. The objective of the study was to look at the public open space in the area – and specifically at play and sports facilities – to determine whether the quantity and quality of provision was adequate for the needs of the community.

During the study however, it became clear that the range of issues of concern to the residents was not restricted simply to the type and quantity of open space, but that organisational issues and the management of open spaces and landscaped areas were also having a significant impact on the community’s quality of life. This study has therefore been widened out to take on board some of these broader issues.

An initial view was that the amount of open space, play and sport facilities provided for Drumsagard seems to broadly meet statutory requirements but in terms of quality and usefulness it falls well short of community needs. We will investigate this in more detail with the DVRA during the study.

The origins of Drumsagard Village

Permission was given in 1995 for the construction of housing on land adjacent to the old Hallside Steelworks, which had closed in 1979 after almost 100 years of steel-making. At that time, in response to the need for additional housing in the area, the then strategic planning authority, Strathclyde Regional Council, agreed to the release of greenbelt land to the south of Hallside on condition that the contaminated steelworks site was restored to a greenbelt use. The area proposed for the construction of housing contained two large colliery waste heaps but this material was used to cap the Hallside site, thereby releasing over 50 hectares of land for the development of ‘Drumsagard Village’. Meanwhile, the Hallside site was developed into a ‘renewable energy park’ by being planted with “fuel crops” (willow and alder trees) that were to be converted into electricity to provide funds for the management of the area.

Drumsagard Photogallery

Willie Miller, the founder and principal of WMUD, died on 12th January 2021 after a short illness. Willie was a much-loved husband and father and had a huge circle of friends  and professional colleagues. He was a multi-talented urban designer whose work had a major impact on hundreds of cities, towns and neighbourhoods throughout the UK and over the past 25 years. He also worked in Ireland, the Channel Islands and the USA.

Ines Triebel has been with WMUD since 2005, and she will continue the practice, drawing on her skills as a planner and designer. Ines has worked on place strategies, masterplans, policy guidance, regeneration and development frameworks, and the design of public realm and streetscape projects. She has extensive experience of working with communities, including charrettes.

WMUD will continue its long-standing strategic partnerships with Benton Scott-Simmons, Nick Wright Planning, Kevin Murray Associates, icecream architecture, yellow book and others. Please direct inquiries to Ines at [email protected] or contact any of the practices named above.