Dalbeattie Outdoor Sports Center project set to be part of Dumfries and Galloway Council’s bid for Leveling Up funding bid

A plan to create an outdoor sports center in Dalbeattie is set to be part of a council bid to win millions of pounds in government money.

The Rocks and Wheels development is one of several projects local authorities say would benefit from the UK government’s Leveling Up fund, which aims to prioritize investment in “areas of low productivity and connectivity”.

Councilors will be asked to approve the choice of projects next week.

A report for Tuesday’s full council meeting reveals the council can submit up to three bids for money from the Leveling Up fund – one for each Westminster constituency and one linked to transport.

The Rocks and Wheels project is proposed to form part of the Dumfries and Galloway constituency bid.

Dalbeattie Community Initiative is working to transform the former primary school into an outdoor center based on cycling, as well as other activities such as running, walking and climbing.

The report says the project would create 23 full-time jobs at Rocks and Wheels and indirectly create another 30.

The project is estimated to cost a total of £6m and is expected to bid for £5.4m in upgrade cash.

The aim of the constituency of Dumfries and Galloway’s bid would be to “develop opportunities for outdoor pursuits, building on the boom in holiday and increased desire within communities for outdoor pursuits that happened as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic”.

As a result, it is suggested to also bid for £4.6m for Stranraer Water Sports Hub. The redevelopment of Stranraer’s George Hotel, estimated to cost £8.7million, is also included.

The transport-themed bid has three aspects: the purchase of 16 electric buses, improved cycle lanes as part of a plan to create a coast-to-coast route from Portpatrick to Eyemouth and the creation of five electric vehicle centers, one of which would be in Gatehouse.

They would include charging stations for cars, bicycles and buses as well as the infrastructure needed to rent electric vehicles.

The total cost of the transport proposal is approximately £14 million.

Each of the three local authorities in the constituency of Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale has the right to choose a project under a joint bid.

The Dumfries and Galloway option is the regeneration of the city’s harbor by Annan Harbor Action Group with a bid to be made for £8.6million in upgrade cash.

Members will be informed that MPs in the region have supported the chosen proposals, thus improving their chances of success.

Councilors will be asked to approve the selected projects on Tuesday.

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