A £80 million growth deal to invest in the local economy was officially signed by ministers from the UK and Scottish Governments and representatives from Falkirk Council in December 2021. 

It is envisaged that the Falkirk Growth Deal (the Deal) will deliver up to 2000 jobs and £1 billion worth of future investment. The Deal is intended to deliver 11 projects through £80 million of investment from UK and Scottish Governments, £45 million from Falkirk Council, and £5.8m from Scottish Canals to create an Investment Zone for Falkirk and Grangemouth over a 10 year period. The Deal follows on from £20 million of UK Government funding being allocated to Falkirk from its Levelling Up Funding (LUF), which will help create what is described as a new 'iconic' bridge of its Westfield roundabout.

The bridge, which was granted planning permission in November 2021, is described in the planning application as:  "road improvements on the A9/A094, construction of shared use footbridge with associated earthworks, landscaping and surface water drainage work at Westfield Roundabout."

The project belies what has the potential to be an innovative approach to tackling infrastructure limitations that are a significant barrier to unlocking development sites, including the Falkirk Gateway and former Falkirk College sites both of which are located in close proximity to the Falkirk Community Stadium and Helix Park (home of national treasures, The Kelpies).

The development of both of these sites is necessary if Falkirk Council is to meet local housing need and to relieve rent pressure in the Falkirk Area.

The project is more fully described in the Council's LUF Application, however, its most eye catching component, a new elevated pedestrian and cycle path at Westfield Roundabout - which for footie fans is the big roundabout near Falkirk Community Stadium – is best described with reference to the visual contained in the application and on the Council's website. With its futuristic four circle design (described in the local press as almost flying drone-like), the project has been some time in the making. Cost has been a barrier to delivery, however, with the recent cash injection from the LUF, the Council is confident that the project can be delivered by 2024.

In its LUF Application the Council references stakeholder engagement and support for the project. Key themes emerging from stakeholder consultation have helped inform the project design and feedback received demonstrates that the project is well understood and has secured a supportive response. The project is an important step towards the regeneration of the Falkirk area. Securing the outcomes that have been identified by the Council is a longer term ambition, but the new bridge may just be what is needed to drive progress.

To discuss accessing funding in a local government context, please get in touch with our partners Jackie McGuire, Niall McLean or Stuart Murray, whose details are set out below.


Niall McLean

Partner & Solicitor Advocate