North Ayrshire Council is considering a proposal to replace its ageing high flats with brand-new, state-of-the-art housing, at a possible cost of over £22million. 

The proposal is being considered by the Council as it seeks to ensure its residents can enjoy high quality, affordable and energy efficient housing.

But the Saltcoats flats could be saved as the Council explore a number of options. 

A final decision on the high flats is unlikely to be made until later this year and the Council will use that time to hold full and comprehensive consultation with all residents to ensure that their questions are answered and to identify the best way forward.

In a report for the Council’s Cabinet on Tuesday, March 20, three main options for the tower blocks are outlined:

• Option 1 - Retain all seven towers blocks and launch an improvements programme, including installation of sprinklers, alongside regular maintenance at a total cost of £22.5m over 25 years.

• Option 2 - Demolish all seven blocks and replace with low-rise housing constructed on-site and elsewhere, at a net additional cost of £22.1m, to be completed by 2023.

• Option 3 - Demolish the five Irvine tower blocks only, with replacement low rise housing constructed on-site and elsewhere, and retain the Saltcoats tower blocks, at a net additional cost of £14.4m.

Council Leader Joe Cullinane said that tenants will have a big say on the proposals, which would bring about the end of high-rise living in North Ayrshire.

He said: “In the coming weeks and months, we will speak to all of our residents and offer them the chance to tell us face-to-face their thoughts on these ambitious proposals.

“From my point of view, this is an amazing opportunity to not only improve the quality of our Council houses, but to improve the lives of our tenants and help with the ongoing transformation and regeneration of both the Fullarton and Saltcoats communities.

“There are clear links between better housing and better health – if we can provide that better standard of accommodation to our tenants, we can see their quality of life improve at the same time.”

A report on the outcome of the consultation is expected to be brought before Cabinet this summer, with the next steps to be considered at that stag