New vision for main gateway into Ayr
South Ayrshire Council is working on a new vision for the main gateway into Ayr, including Burns Statue Square, as part of The Strategic Governance Group which includes Transport Scotland, Network Rail and ScotRail.
In December 2022, following a report produced by Mott MacDonald, the Council took a decision to demolish the southern section of the privately owned building under the statutory powers of the Building (Scotland) Act 2003.
The Council is now set to produce an Ayr Town Centre plan which includes proposals to transform that part of the town. This will include plans for a new railway station and or transport interchange.
Network Rail is also considering concepts for a newly integrated railway station taking advantage of any demolition.
Both of these plans will build on the findings of the Ayr Station Hotel Phase Two Option Review (June 2023), which shortlisted some options for the building. The independent study is available to view at https://www.south-ayrshire.gov.uk/ayr-railway-station.
The study provides more detail on four options for the B listed building, but ultimately says that the only viable solution is a new railway station and or transport interchange for taxis, buses etc.
Mike Newall, Depute Chief Executive and Director of Housing, Operations and Development at South Ayrshire Council said: "We have taken a decision to remove the southern section of the building, but this was never going to happen overnight. In addition to finding the £6.6 million quoted for the demolition, we need to work with our partners to plan for the future. A new modern railway station with a transport hub is the only way forward and we are working with our partners to make this a reality.
"This area is one of the main gateways into Ayr and it needs to be far more welcoming. We're working on a new town centre plan which will complement our vision for the railway station as well as provide more detail on other regeneration projects, such as the transformation of Burns Statue Square.
"In the meantime, Network Rail has agreed to pay half the monthly costs of the scaffolding and encapsulation works, and we are very grateful for their decision."