1,000 jobs pledge

Malin marine manufacturing hub on Clyde gets council backing

A model of the SMTP planned for a long-derelict site

Engineering company Malin Group has moved closer to creating a 1,000-job marine manufacturing hub on the Clyde.

Planning consent has been granted by West Dunbartonshire Council for phase one of the Scottish Marine Technology Park (SMTP) to be built at Old Kilpatrick in the shadow of the Erskine Bridge.

The first phase includes a large fabrication facility, consent for a deep-water jetty and ship hoist – the largest of its kind in Scotland – and a strategy to redevelop the former oil storage site.

Group managing director John MacSween said: “It is an important step on the journey, and it clearly demonstrates a willingness from the local authority to have industrial businesses, and the employment they bring with them, back on the Clyde riverside with the presence of exciting structures for the marine environment.

“We believe the Clyde has much to offer to the wider marine manufacturing community again and we are committed to making land and marine facilities available to any companies who can make use of them on a fair and equitable basis.

“As a show of faith we will be bringing our own fabrication division to the SMTP to kick start the development.”

Councillor Diane Docherty, vice-chair of the council’s planning committee, said: “The heritage of the Clyde is something we are extremely proud of and so it is pleasing to see efforts to bring this site back to life in such a meaningful way for our area. The potential for almost 1000 new jobs created is brilliant news for our residents.”

The SMTP will be built on a long-derelict 47-acre site, formerly the Carless oil storage facility which suffered extensive damage during WW2.

Unlike locations further up-river which are being developed for housing and leisure facilities, the site is land zoned for industrial use and has direct access to a deep-water channel via an 80-metre long deep-water quayside berth.

MacSween said he believed the hub would be a “magnet” for marine engineering and technology organisations and “a centre of excellence” for the sector.

Malin commissioned respected land development and infrastructure consultants Peter Brett Associates (PBA) to carry out an economic impact assessment of the development.

The findings make happy reading for West Dunbartonshire, which has an unemployment rate of 4.9% compared with the Scottish average of 3.9%, and for the future of Clydeside industry.

PBA envisages an economic impact that will create 986 jobs if the plan is fully realised and add £125.4m annually to West Dunbartonshire’s economy. The construction phase of the project will also see over 600 additional short-term jobs created.

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