A plan to revamp part of a canal running between Edinburgh and Falkirk has been nominated for a national award.
The Edinburgh Union Canal Strategy has been shortlisted for the Strategy and Masterplanning category of the 2012 Waterways Renaissance Awards.
The Canal Strategy, which was approved by the City of Edinburgh Council in December, aims to ensure the maximum use of the 200-year-old Union Canal by visitors and locals through a range of activities.
Officially launched at the start of the year, it seeks to create seven ‘hubs’ along its banks, developing a canal culture through recreational, business and community involvement.
John Bury, head of Planning for the City of Edinburgh Council, said: “A lot of detailed planning and consultation went into producing the strategy and it’s a great honour for this hard work to be recognised at a national level.
“Ultimately we hope this strategy will bring about the development of the canal so that more people from across the city, and beyond, can appreciate and enjoy its many facilities and benefit from its beauty as well as the economic potential it provides."
The Waterways Renaissance Awards, run by The Waterways Trust, reward projects that have turned inland waterways into desirable places for recreation, education and business.
The Canal Strategy was drawn up after a series of focus groups, consultation events and collaboration with key canal users and is the result of a partnership between the City of Edinburgh Council and Scottish Canals.
Amongst the highlights planned for Ratho, Wester Hailes, Meggetland, Harrison Park and the Lochrin Basin are a centre for excellence for water sports at Meggetland and an overnight mooring destination at Lochrin Basin.
Along the length of the 16km canal, issues like lighting, moorings, developments, public art and renewable energy will also be looked at.
Steve Dunlop, chief executive of Scottish Canals, said: “The Edinburgh Canal Strategy sets an exciting, imaginative and deliverable plan to create a vibrant new community space and tourist destination for the capital. It is great to be recognised in this way because most importantly, it is a well thought out strategy created with the community and one which will be delivered with the community.”
Roger Hanbury, chief executive of The Waterways Trust, added: “This is the tenth year of the Waterways Renaissance Awards and it is truly inspiring to see that, even in these very challenging economic times, people and organisations are continuing to work together to realise the benefits of our canals and rivers for communities across the United Kingdom.”
The winners of The 2012 Waterways Renaissance Awards will be announced on May 23.
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