AMBITIOUS plans to spend tens of millions of pounds on major infrastructure projects in East Renfrewshire are to be accelerated.

A total of £44million was set aside for East Renfrewshire when it became one of eight local authorities to sign up to the Glasgow City Region City Deal back in 2014.

The massive spending programme, funded by the UK and Scottish governments, has already seen the creation of new commercial units at Crossmill Business Park, in Barrhead.

An adjacent 17-acre former factory site has also been prepared for private sector investment to support business growth and provide employment opportunities.

In addition, Greenlaw Business Centre, in Newton Mearns, is set to help meet a growing demand for flexible business space in the area, supporting start-ups and existing small businesses to grow and create new jobs.

Now further spending as part of the City Deal is to be pushed forward, with more than £740m expected to be spent on infrastructure in the eight local authority areas over the next five years.

Scottish Secretary Alister Jack said: “The Glasgow City Region Deal has made great progress since 2014, with projects which are helping to create thousands of jobs, homes and opportunities that will improve people’s lives.

“I look forward to seeing further developments as the fruits of our Glasgow City Region City Deal investment benefit the region.

Barrhead News: Alister Jack Alister Jack

“The UK Government has committed more than £1.4billion in city and growth deals across Scotland, with more to come. We are working to bring sustainable growth and prosperity to every part of the country and we will continue to work with the Scottish Government and local partners to ensure this happens.”

Susan Aitken, chair of the Glasgow City Region Cabinet, added: “The Glasgow City Region Deal continues to make significant progress and is building on its status as one of the most advanced in the UK.

“We are now delivering projects at pace. Communities are beginning to see the delivery of the deal’s promise and that it is having a clear transformational effect.

“More than 20 major and transformative infrastructure projects are either underway or due to commence.

“We have worked with almost 20,000 unemployed citizens and supported 4,500 back into sustainable employment, transport and connectivity is improving, we will generate a permanent uplift in our Gross Value Added measure and are set to leverage billions in private sector investment.

Barrhead News: Susan Aitken Susan Aitken

“We look forward to the next five years, when we can really build on the potential of the City Deal and ensure we have the levers to transform the Glasgow City Region into the real powerhouse of the North.”