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Last Updated: Thursday, 28 April, 2005, 15:33 GMT 16:33 UK
Landfill site to be urban forest
Digger
The landfill site will be turned into an urban woodland
Plans to turn a controversial landfill site into Scotland's largest urban forest have been approved by Glasgow City Council.

Hundreds of thousands of trees will be planted on the 93 hectare site, the size of 600 football pitches, near the M74 at Mount Vernon in east Glasgow.

It is hoped that cash for the 1.5m project at the Paterson's landfill site will come from a Landfill Tax scheme.

Campaigners have opposed the landfill site on health grounds for years.

Widespread support

The council said it had conducted a survey which found that 94% of local residents "strongly backed" the proposals for redevelopment.

Ballieston MSP Margaret Curran said she was "delighted" by the plans.

Ms Curran said: "We all know the real concerns in the local community and this represents a very important step forward which has widespread local support and represents an important step in the regeneration of the area."

Mount Vernon councillor Euan McLeod said the project was one of the most "ambitious" in the world in terms of greenbelt regeneration.

Councillors McLeod and MacBean at the landfill site
I strongly believe that other areas could benefit from this type of environmental regeneration and that we will see even more urban forestry introduced around our city
Councillor Robert MacBean (left)

He added: "This will create the biggest urban forest in the UK and it will be even larger than Bellahouston Park, or Kelvingrove and Tollcross Park combined."

The extraction of sand and gravel, and infill with waste, has been carried out at the site for more than 30 years.

Paterson's had considered turning the site into agricultural land but this was not deemed viable.

Woodland walkways

The redevelopment is expected to take six years to complete.

It is unlikely that public access to woodland walkways will be granted before this time.

Gases from the landfill waste are expected to be generated for up to 30 years.

It is currently pumped from the site by a series of gas wells and pipelines and transferred to the National Grid.

Baillieston councillor Robert MacBean said: "It comes as no surprise that local people are fully endorsing this but the council has to agree the restoration strategy and monitor its implementation.

"I strongly believe that other areas could benefit from this type of environmental regeneration and that we will see even more urban forestry introduced around our city."


SEE ALSO:
Funding boost for waste projects
18 Oct 04 |  Scotland
Landfill plan gets green light
04 May 04 |  Scotland
Villagers protest over landfill
04 Mar 04 |  Scotland


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