Open space has been designed as an integral part of the development by creating a series of 'pocket parks' and providing places of high amenity and recreational value. It is intended to encourage people to sit out under trees and in comfortable areas within a lively street, at all times of the day and throughout the year.
Surrounding the site
Spatial connection to the surrounding landscape
The wooded character of the Orry, a key feature of Eaglesham, has been connected and continued into the site, forming a major entrance feature, as well as a spatial connection with moors. This connection into the surrounding green network will allow for opportunities to encourage healthy lifestyles.
Enhanced boundary treatments
The surrounding agricultural moorland landscape and associated village boundary characteristics of Eaglesham have influenced the edges of the development. On the western side, an informal earth/stone banking from existing boundary walls, planted with native herbaceous perennial ground cover plants, will create the traditional roadside bankings now predominantly lost in the area. The boundary treatments will therefore hopefully encourage biodiversity, as well as protect against the prevailing westerly wind but will also allow for pleasant views from the houses, out across the moors. Together, this will help to create a positive edge to the development by not trying to 'hide' the development.
The fragmented pattern of native tree blocks interspersed with native ground covers assists in reducing the visual effect of the development from the surrounding open countryside, reflecting existing characteristics of the village edge. The block pattern of the tree group frames views out from the development whilst allowing light into rear gardens.
Within the site
There are three different types of space
Central landscape feature i.e. amenity open space
The landscaping at the entrance to the site has been pulled through the development towards a central landscape feature. This comprises of a sequence of three simple open spaces which connect the core of the site through to the moorland. Lawns with informal mixed tree planting flank a sinuous footpath to provide a pleasant and safe (overlooked) connection for pedestrians.
Gardens i.e. private open space
The detached, semi detached and terraced properties have been provided with gardens in proportion to their size. All the private gardens will be one and a half times the ground floor area of the house.
For the apartment dwellings a minimum provision of 30m 2 of space per dwelling has been provided. This will be in the form of a communal garden adjacent to the apartments, for the benefit of apartment residents only.
Play spaces i.e. active open space
Provision has been made for play space in accordance with the standards set out by East Renfrewshire's local policy. A total of six children's play areas (1 Locally Equipped Area for Play LEAP and 5 Local Areas for Play LAPs) have been integrated, and evenly distributed, across the development and are combined with 'marker' homes to provide focal points as 'way finding' elements within the development as well as facilitating supervision from nearby residents. A play area is situated in the central square and will be equipped for the required age group. The play spaces are perceived as enclosures contained within low walls, combined with integral bench seating which will encourage residential relaxation.
New planting: Trees integrated throughout
Street trees have been strategically integrated throughout the whole development to create a 'green background' and a strong connection to nature all through the neighbourhood. Beech is the dominant species in the local area. Therefore, by responding to the local context, beech and closely associated species such as southern beech, hornbeam and sweet chestnut have been selected for the public realm. Decorative ornamental grasses animate the open space and provide movement and colour next to the hard surfaces.
Retained planting: Acknowledgement of historical tree line
A historic east-west tree line defines the rear garden boundary to the adjacent Polnoon Street properties and continues through the site. Despite the trees having to be removed due to poor health, to acknowledge their Conservation Area significance, the alignment of the original tree line will be re-instated as part of the landscape strategy.
Retained planting: Mixed hedgerow
The mixed hedgerow along Moor Road has been retained as an important component of the landscape character of the approach into the village. It also acts to segregate the new footpath along Moor Road to from the road itself, improving the amenity of users, whilst also acting as a foil to the new houses which are set back and sit behind it. The hedge will be protected during construction.
Management and maintenance
Built in from the start
Management has been considered from the earliest pre-application discussions and through the planning process to ensure high quality standards that will allow the landscape elements to grow and flourish, improving the sense of place through time.
Prior to works commencing on site Mactaggart & Mickel's Ltd site engineers will carry out a cut and fill exercise to identify where top soil and sub soil can be efficiently redistributed around the site to avoid unnecessary and costly removal.
The location of the temporary spoil heaps are identified to ensure minimum movement within the site during the construction period and located away from tree canopy extents so as not to damage tree roots or compact the ground depriving the soil around the trees of oxygen. Any surplus top/sub soil that cannot be used on site will be exported off the site in accordance with SEPA waste management regulations
Long term care
The management and maintenance of all the public open space amenity areas and play areas will be carried out by the appointed Property Management Factor after undergoing a competitive tender procedure which evaluates cost with service. The works would be carried out to Mactaggart & Mickel's Ltd Standard Maintenance specification for both summer and winter seasons.