MAJOR plans to build two nurseries in East Renfrewshire are expected to be given the green light today.

East Renfrewshire Council has submitted applications for a family centre and nursery school at Crookfur Park, in Newton Mearns, and an extension to Cross Arthurlie Primary, in Barrhead, which would hold nursery classes.

Planning chiefs have recommended the proposals for approval ahead of a meeting this afternoon, despite more than 30 objections.

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Reports to the council’s planning committee state: “The main reason for the development is that the Scottish Government has made a commitment to increase the provision of early learning and childcare by 2020 for children who are three or four years old, as well as for vulnerable children who are two years old. This is, in effect, a rise to 30 hours per week for each child.

“It has been indicated the council’s existing nursery provision is almost at full capacity and the new duty effectively doubles the required provision for the same number of children.”
The extension at Cross Arthurlie Primary would take up to 60 pupils.

Plans include a playground area and an extension to the car park, with spaces rising from 25 to 35.

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Objectors say the development would impact on pedestrian safety, lead to inappropriate on-street parking and disrupt nearby residents during construction.

They also say the proposed car parking is inadequate and raise fears over anti-social behaviour and pollution from idling cars.

The planning report states: “It has been indicated that the preference of the council’s education department is to locate the nursery school as close as possible to the primary school.

“This allows a natural transition between the early years and the primary years.”

The Crookfur Park application would see Crookfur Pavilion demolished to make way for the family centre and nursery, which would accommodate up to 120 pupils.

The plan also includes a community changing rooms extension, plant room, cycle and pram shelter and car parking.

Opponents to the scheme say it will add traffic to a busy area and impact on the character of the park.

They also feel parking on the site is already used beyond its capacity and have concerns over the loss of a play park.