Revamp of ex-Tesco sites could create thousands of jobs

East Kilbride is among a raft of former Tesco sites set for a revamp
East Kilbride is among a raft of former Tesco sites set for a revamp
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Property developer London & Scottish Investments (LSI) has unveiled plans to redevelop a raft of former Tesco sites north of the Border.

The Glasgow-based firm said the package of planning applications – billed as one of the biggest in Scotland – is expected to create more than 500,000 square feet of retail space, resulting in “thousands of new jobs” across ten communities.

A number of other sites acquired by LSI from Tesco in August are earmarked for residential development, with more details set to be announced early next year.

LSI, formed in 2012, has a team of 35 and manages more than £500 million of assets. The firm is the asset manager of the Regional Reit, a real estate investment trust with a heavy focus on the Scottish commercial property scene that made its stock market debut last month.

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The food and non-food retail developments are planned for Aviemore, Cowdenbeath, Crieff, Cupar, Dalkeith, East Kilbride, Glasgow Springburn, Kilmarnock, Paisley and Thurso.

As the East Kilbride and Paisley sites would represent “major developments”, LSI said a 12-week period of statutory public consultation must be carried out before it can submit a planning application, which is expected to be lodged in the spring.

Group development director Bryan Wilson said: “This package of planning applications is one of the biggest that Scotland has ever seen.

“The economic redevelopment of these vacant sites is fantastic news not just for the communities around them, but for the Scottish economy as a whole as we expect thousands of new jobs to be created as a result.”

He added: “We are now in advanced discussions with a number of food and non-food retailers to occupy these developments and hope to be able to announce these in the near future. Subject to securing the necessary approvals, construction work is expected to start in spring and summer 2016.”