Next stage of Kelso revamp revealed

Kelso gap site
Kelso gap site

MORE work to improve Kelso town centre was revealed this week with the news that a local firm is set to build the new development between Woodmarket and Horsemarket.

The existing public toilet block will be demolished and a three storey and attic property erected, which will include public toilets and office space.

It will also act as a bus interchange and will include a digital tourist information point on the Woodmarket side of the development.

Kelso firm M&J Ballantyne will carry out the £780,000 scheme, with work scheduled to start in May and last around 40 weeks.

Councillor Ron Smith, the council’s executive member for planning and environment, said: “This project is considered a priority and will bring a range of social and economic benefits to Kelso’s residents, businesses and visitors.”

The pedestrian link between the two streets will be retained.

Flexible office space will be provided in the upper floors of the new building, which will enable either a single tenant to take over the whole space or up to five tenants taking on subdivided areas.

The project has been funded by the European Regional Development Fund, Kelso Townscape Heritage Initiative and Scottish Borders Council.

Architects Camerons have designed the building, in the heart of the Kelso conservation area, to complement the architecture of the surrounding buildings whilst introducing an element of contemporary design.

Air-source heat pumps will provide heat within the building and solar panels on the roof will generate electricity for use in the toilets and offices.

Last week the search began for the design of a piece of public artwork which will be erected in The Square in Kelso.