A new pop-up community space has been created in Hurlford, Kilmarnock. It aims to create an inviting community space for people to play, meet and spend time in the village centre.
The pop-up parklet is the first step in reimagining the Village Centre.
Over the past year, we've all appreciated the benefits quality outdoor space can bring to our daily lives.
In Hurlford, a new community space has been introduced in the Village Centre, thanks to funding from East Ayrshire Council and Sustrans’ Scotland Street Design programme, funded by the Scottish Government.
The temporary changes aim to tackle issues such as inappropriate parking and lack of space to spend time in and move through.
The pop-up parklet is on the corner of Academy Street and Mauchline Road.
It features benches, planters, cycle parking, historical images and surface markings that create an inviting community space for people to play, meet and spend time in the village centre.
Reimagining the Village Centre
It's part of the wider Hurlford Street Design Project, a partnership between Sustrans Scotland and East Ayrshire Council.
The local community helped develop a concept design that represents the community’s vision for the village centre.
It aims to celebrate local history and heritage, provide access for all, address vehicle dominance and speeds and enhance public spaces.
Through this process, the local community acknowledged that the public space on the corner of Academy Street and Mauchline Road was previously used inappropriately for parking, and there was a lack of space to spend time in.
From these discussions, the team saw an opportunity to make small, temporary changes that will have a big impact on the way people move through and use the area while the wider project develops.
Artwork reflects local history and makes the space a more pleasant place to spend time in.
A taster of things to come
If successful, the parklet could remain in place until the Hurlford Street Design Project is delivered by East Ayrshire Council or, it could be adapted depending on feedback from the community.
Emily Davie, Sustrans Scotland Street Design Project Co-ordinator said:
“We’ve really enjoyed working with the local community to develop designs that will re-imagine Hurlford Village Centre.
"We’re excited for this next step in the project, and for the local community to start feeling the benefits of more accessible and inviting community space that seeks to connect the past to the present.
"Thanks to DeWaldens Garden Centre in Kilmarnock and Hayes Garden Centre in Symington for providing the benches and to Hurlford Primary School for planting and adopting the planters.
"We’d encourage local people to feedback on the parklet, to ensure it meets the needs and aspirations of the community while the wider Street Design Project develops further.”
The parklet is a new concept
Councillor Jim Roberts, Cabinet Member for Economy and Infrastructure said:
“Community regeneration, Placemaking and Community Wealth Building are all high priorities for East Ayrshire Council.
"Working with all sectors of the community, everyone can have a say in the future of the places where we live and work.
"This parklet is a new concept that makes better and greener use of a space that will benefit people of all ages at a time when having good outdoor areas to meet in and enjoy is a big help in coping with the constraints we’ve all lived with in the last year.
“People and businesses have worked in partnership with ourselves and Sustrans, and it’s very much a taster of things to come. It will evolve and allow people a chance to see what’s possible.
“This project is a testament to the community of Hurlford who’ve engaged so enthusiastically with the chance to make their spaces more user friendly.”
Locals are encouraged to feedback on the parklet by emailing Eilidh.Russell@sustrans.org.uk.