MORE than £3million of Scottish Government funding will be handed out to vital town centre projects.

Tollcross Winter Gardens is set for a £1m upgrade using money from a £2m fund for historic buildings in the city.

More than £700,000 could be handed to pantries in Parkhead, Ruchazie, Castlemilk and Govanhill to “address food insecurity”.

And around £300,000 has been earmarked for a small grants scheme, allowing ‘locally driven’ town centre projects to apply for funding.

The schemes will go before Glasgow City Council chiefs for approval on Thursday. They have been allocated cash from a Scottish Government Town Centre Fund, with Glasgow receiving just over £3m of a £50m pot.

Councillor Kenny McLean, city convener for neighbourhoods, housing and public realm, said: “Glasgow’s allocation is required to be committed before the end of March 2020.

“Given the tight timescales associated with the grant funding, committee is requested to approve upper limit allocations to the identified projects at this time. This will allow more detailed schemes to be worked up.”

The identified projects include proposed food pantries, with £336,000 allocated for Parkhead Housing Association at Parkhead Public School Drill Hall, £96,000 for a Ruchazie Pantry in a shop unit on Gartloch Road, £108,000 for a unit at Braes Shopping Centre to be ran by Ardenglen Housing Association and £234,000 for space in Govanhill Baths, led by Govanhill Baths Trust.

Money would be used to refurbish premises, allowing “an alternative to the foodbank model”.

“Pantries offer dignity and choice in exchange for a subscription and/or membership fee, targeting those on a low income or recovering from crisis,” Mr McLean said. “Set out as a shop, pantries display a variety of good quality food, which members can choose from.”

A report by Mr McLean states the pantries will bring additional footfall to town centres, stimulating economic activity. Memberships would be around £2.50 per week.

The £2m fund for historic buildings could see the “currently derelict” grade B-listed Tollcross Winter Gardens conservatory brought into active use.

“The adjacent ‘Millennium Building’ is scheduled for demolition to make way for the construction of a new early years facility,” Mr McLean’s report adds. “This creates an opportunity to bring the structure back into active re-use as part of the wider project.

“The project will build the profile of Tollcross town centre as a visitor destination, linking the historic built form of the town centre and the international class swimming pool, to the new nursery establishment, and enable the re-activation of the park.”

Elderpark and Parkhead libraries – both listed buildings and “within areas of multiple deprivation” – have been assigned £550,000 and £450,000 respectively.

Mr McLean said: “Both libraries are subject to current discussions

regarding repurposing to ensure they address community needs now and in the future.

“Funding will ensure the buildings are in reasonable condition for expanded community use and also allow their function as libraries at the heart of town centres to be enhanced for the future.”

The £300,000 for a small grants scheme would be directed at “locally driven town centre activities” and prioritised towards high Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation areas.

“It is anticipated that grants will be awarded up to a maximum of £50,000 to individual projects,” Mr McLean added.

Officers will develop a ‘shadow list’ of schemes to ensure any underspend is reallocated.