A New Plan Begins to Take Shape

A key element that has resonated with many local people is the establishment of a new “civic square” that will offer a pleasant and inviting public space for both visitors and local residents alike.

As a first stage towards this objective, NICE has embraced some of the suggestions that have been made in relation to the old Social Work building opposite the Community & Arts Centre. NICE has now produced a plan outlining how it could be renovated, generate jobs and enhance the appearance of the town centre. Download the PDF document here.

This is a consultative exercise and NICE would welcome any comments and further input to this initial discussion starter. The plan shows the building put to use with a shop, a tourist information centre incorporating a taster for Nairn Museum in the old police cells (which are still there), three offices, a restaurant and relocated public conveniences. The existing toilet block would be demolished.

The whole is designed to form part of a homogeneous development, incorporating a public square as a focus for visitors and passing traffic together with improved landscaping and parking.

Through the offices of NICE it is now possible for the people of Nairn to seize the initiative and renovate this property for the benefit of the whole community. With just over 800 members, NICE has now formally requested that Highland Council take this building off the market to allow the group to further consider these new proposals.

This is your chance to contribute and help shape the final plan. We’d love to hear from you.  Please refer to our Comments Policy before posting.

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3 Responses to A New Plan Begins to Take Shape

  1. Joe Telfer says:

    Having had a quick look at the plan, I think this looks like quite an imaginative new proposal for the Old social work buildings and toilets etc. Getting rid of the old toilets and incorporating new ones is a good idea. Nicely renovated, it could make a good focal starting point for the new civic square.

  2. Mandy Lawson says:

    Just want to repeat my suggestion – posted under NICE ideas that NICE considers embracing the Transition Town model into its vision for the future
    Any new or in this case retro fitted building will need to be designed for a low carbon future ( and the reality of soaring power bills for carbon based energy) and thus should incorporate , or even better showcase best practice in sustainability, energy use, recycling in its design – to reflect a Nairn commitment to reducing the carbon footprint
    I can’t see this in current plans but it would be interesting to see what might be possible …..if the Transition theme were taken on board.
    For instance what kind of public information messages might we want to communicate to tourists re Nairn as a waste aware ‘green town’, how will public toilets minimise energy, water and paper use( eg use of hand dryers) , will the proposed restaurant promote locally produced food, and thoughtful recycling , plus could outside landscaping include a community garden, edible plants, recycle bins and well designed cycle parking to encourage people to leave the car at home ( 0r even ‘Nairn bikes’ for hire- as they have in some cities – which the tourist office could help promote)
    Hope this is helpful

  3. Sandy says:

    It looks reasonable, and can only be better that the run down ‘grey’ buildings currently there. One comment I would make though is , “what makes this building specifically a Nairn building rather than any other bog standard (toilet pun not intended) building in any other town”. After a number of years, and the new gloss paint has faded, will this building still stand out as something uniquely belonging to Nairn and that the local community can still look at and be happy with. I’m not talking about some stupid architectural flight of fancy, but something that reflects the town, its environment and so on..

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