AN ENVIRONMENTAL project in the Three Towns has received over £39,000 of funding from the Central Scotland Green Network (CSGN) Development Fund to promote active travel in the area.

North Ayrshire Council has been awarded £39,250 to create a ‘green corridor’ along the former Caledonian railway line between Saltcoats and Ardrossan, bringing the site into positive use for active travel, biodiversity and recreation.

The project includes the upgrade of existing paths, the improvement of open space, installation of seating, signage and interpretation, and tree and wildflower planting.

The CSGN is Europe’s largest greenspace initiative which seeks to transform Central Scotland into a place where the environment adds value to the economy and where people’s lives are enriched by its quality.

Environment Minister Dr Aileen McLeod said that 18 projects in total across the central belt are to share £438,434 to improve access to greenspace and help transform the quality of life for people living and working in the area.

The projects are based in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Falkirk, Midlothian, North Ayrshire, East Ayrshire, Renfrewshire, East Renfrewshire, Fife, North Lanarkshire and South Lanarkshire.

Dr Aileen McLeod said: “This additional £438,434 for the CSGN Development Fund in 2016/17 is on top of almost £5.8 million which has already been allocated to over 150 projects in the past six years. It is fantastic to see so many exciting projects receive a share of the latest funding. I have no doubt that this will bring a wide range of benefits to the environment, local communities and local economies. These projects have all been developed with the local communities that will benefit from them and together they will continue the transformation of the central belt into a better place to live, work and visit.”

Keith Geddes, Chair of the Central Scotland Green Network Trust, said: “This significant extension to the Development Fund will ensure CSGN continues to make a considerable contribution to projects working towards improving the central belt on the ground.

“These innovative projects will focus on safeguarding trees and woodlands for the future, adopting green infrastructure, creating vibrant community growing resources to encourage healthy eating and enhancing access routes for the benefit of local and disadvantaged communities, businesses and the environment.”

As one of the Scottish Government’s national developments for Scotland in the third National Planning Framework, the CSGN is changing the face of Central Scotland, by restoring, transforming and greening the landscape of an area stretching from Ayrshire and Inverclyde in the west, to Fife and the Lothians in the east.

The CSGN encompasses 19 local authorities across 10,000 sq km and has the potential to benefit 3.5million people.

For further information about the CSGN Development Fund, please visit