Helping Communities to Bring Vacant Land Back into Use

Nikola Miller, Planning Policy and Practice Officer at RTPI Scotland, reports on a new national programme to bring derelict land back into temporary use


The Scottish Government has announced that Architecture and Design Scotland (A+DS) will lead the national roll out of the Legacy 2014 programme Stalled Spaces Scotland, aimed at supporting local authorities and communities to bring derelict and vacant land back in to temporary use to benefit communities. This launch represents the 54th national Legacy 2014 programme.

Drawing learning from the award winning Stalled Spaces initiative led by Glasgow City Council, Architecture and Design Scotland will provide support and guidance for local authorities across Scotland to develop their own local Stalled Spaces initiatives.

To align with the Scottish Government’s Town Centre Action Plan and the Town Centre First Principle the programme will primarily look at stalled spaces located within town centres to empower people to bring these spaces back into positive use for the benefit for the whole community.

The projects can range from art installations and growing spaces to temporary events and pop-up play spaces that can help the community to come together. We will welcome innovative ideas and will be providing support to Local authorities who will run the day to day delivery of the locally based Stalled Spaces programmes.

The Glasgow City Council Stalled Spaces initiative was launched it in 2011 and gained international recognition – winning the City to City FAD Award from the City of Barcelona.  It has helped transform more than 75 Stalled Spaces in Glasgow.

Starting in the summer of 2014 A+DS will help identify and develop up to 30 Stalled Spaces sites across Scotland by December 2016. A+DS will take forward a programme of consultation with local authorities, producing a guidance document and hold a seminar to inspire and support local authorities, business improvement groups and communities to take their own projects forward.

At this stage A+DS are inviting expressions of interest from local authorities, we would like to hear from them by 15 August 2014. This will allow them to plan the location of a series of information surgeries to support the forthcoming application process. Full details are included in the Stalled Spaces Scotland Expression of Interest downloadable resource.

Anyone looking for further information on how to get involved with the project you can contact

Image: Greyfriars Garden, Glasgow (c) Warren Media/ A+DS

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