£55m residential retirement scheme looks to boost Renfrewshire economy

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Plans have been unveiled for what is being billed as Scotland’s first dedicated luxury retirement development, on the outskirts of Glasgow.

The £55 million development in Newton Mearns is said to “challenge the perception of what a retirement scheme should be”. Among the facilities proposed are a “clubhouse” overlooking the adjacent reservoir, a fully equipped gym, spa amenities and various dining options.

The scheme, located on a 17-acre former industrial site, comprises 214 one- and two-bedroom flats, 38 cottages and an 80-bed care home. It involves an improvement of a previous application that was recommended for approval.

The latest proposal is due to be heard by East Renfrewshire Council’s planning committee this week.

An independent economic impact study estimates that the development will support some 365 permanent jobs during the next 30 years and contribute more than £74m to the local economy within that time-frame.

The Netherplace Retirement Development is being taken forward by Glasgow and Singapore-based property company Scotsbridge Holdings, managed by locally-based property developer Shazad Bakhsh.

He believes that Netherplace could become one of the most innovative new communities for over-55s anywhere in the UK.

“Netherplace will be so much more than a retirement development, it will create a vibrant new community,” he said. “By incorporating the latest thinking, contemporary design features and activities ranging from yoga to fishing, this development aims to reinvent the concept of retirement living in Scotland.

“We believe this project will ultimately reduce the burden on local authority care provision by providing residents with more intermediate care options.”

Bakhsh added: “In addition to significiant facility and activity offerings, the development will also feature an on-site day care nursery ensuring interaction with the wider community while the considered layout will encourage neighbours to engage with each other.”

The scheme also aims to be most sustainable of its kind in Scotland, with a district energy centre and heating system.

A reservoir on the site dating back to 1850 will be incorporated into the overall development with plans to create walkways around the water feature.

Glasgow-based practice Jewitt & Wilkie Architects has been appointed to design the development.