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Council / Update on demolition of old Anderson High School provided to community council

Redevelopment of the Knab site is a key part of the SIC's plan to tackle a housing shortage in the isles.

AN UPDATE on the progress of the redevelopment of the former Anderson High School site was provided at a meeting of Lerwick Community Council on Monday night.

Shetland Islands Council’s manager of assets, commissioning and procurement Robert Sinclair wrote to the community council at the end of January to confirm that surveys have now been undertaken on the site.

There is potential for over 100 homes to be built on the site, which was largely vacated when pupils moved to the new Anderson school in 2017, while there could other uses involved too as part of a mixed development.

The first phase of demolition will involve separating the links between the buildings to be retained and those to be demolished.

The second phase will include the main demolition and site clearance.

A demolition warrant is being lodged, while expressions of interest in the work have been received.

The tender documents for the first phase of work are expected to go out in March.

Design of the reinstatements required to the buildings to be retained has also been carried out. This must be to the satisfaction of Historic Environment Scotland and has been the subject of detailed consultation, Sinclair said.

The buildings which will be retained are the Anderson Educational Institute, Bruce Hostel and Janet Courtney Hostel, which are all listed, and the former science block.

The letter to the community council said that a consultation event with Knab residents will be organised soon.

Sinclair added that the council is “committed to the decarbonisation of the development”.

“This will involve, for example, innovative energy efficiency, transport and recycling measures,” he said.

The organisation Architecture and Design Scotland is holding two workshops “intended to identify decarbonisation solutions that relate to the various elements of the project, such as demolition, building re-use, infrastructure works and public realm”.

The letter was shown to members of Lerwick Community Council but members did not make any comment or ask any questions.