THE transformation of a harbour-side eyesore into a state-of-the-art health centre in Ardrossan is officially underway.

The town’s long-awaited new medical centre development was officially launched last Thursday by Margaret Burgess, the Scottish Government Minister for Housing and Welfare.

Mrs Burgess said: “This development is important for Ardrossan and North Ayrshire.

Every time we come through Ardrossan we can see the improvements that are making a real difference to the town and that is what regeneration is all about.” The Irvine Bay Regeneration Company’s project will transform the site of the town’s old County Constabulary Police Office into state-of-the-art 10,000 foot health centre.

The centre - scheduled to open May 2014 - will provide a doctor’s surgery and ancillary healthcare.

Once completed, the centre will house a GP partnership on a 25-year lease supported by the NHS.

The development is being funded by £2.5 million from the Scottish Government’s ‘shovel-ready’ infrastructure projects pot.

Mrs Burgess continued: “From the Scottish Government’s point of view we were absolutely delighted to have the shovel-ready money available for this project.

“The development is a positive step in what we are trying to do in town centres and partnerships between the Scottish Government and local authorities.

“The old police building is part of the community and gives it a sense of place, and it’s important to restore a building that’s been part of Ardrossan for a long time.

For the full story see this week's Ardrossan and Saltcoats Herald.