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September 7, 2011

Inclusive Design

If the object of the exercise is to draw up a new community master plan, the biggest challenge must be to ensure that all the relevant expertise and skills are available at the appropriate moment and that all the relevant voices and vested interests have full access to the process.  Over the past year Scottish Government has been piloting a new design approach involving ‘charretes’. Phase 2 is soon to be underway in Callander, Carrick and Johnstone


A series of design workshops, known as charrettes, will take place in three Scottish towns to bring together residents with designers as they develop plans for their areas. A charrette is an intense design workshop that takes place over a number of days, in which stakeholders within a community work directly with a design team to generate community plans that relate to local needs and aspirations.

 The aim of the process is to deliver better quality environments for communities and to raise standards in architecture, place making and sustainable construction. Planning proposals for Callander, Johnstone and Girvan will form part of the next round of charrettes, building on the success of pilot events last year in Lochgelly, Dumfries and Aberdeen. 

A framework of four design teams have been selected to work with the local communities, councils and agencies to facilitate the charrettes. The design workshops will take place from late summer onwards.

Cabinet Secretary for Finance, Employment and Sustainable Growth John Swinney said: “It is important that we value and capitalise upon the deep understanding and knowledge held by communities about the places in which they live and work.

“Charrettes can help to harness that knowledge, giving communities a real voice so that they contribute to the development of well-informed plans that provide the best opportunities for their communities to flourish.

” Through the mainstreaming of charrettes, Scotland is leading the way in how communities are contributing to their future environments. This is an innovative process which is grounded in practicality, and this is essential if we are to create sustainable, low-carbon communities across Scotland.” 

The projects selected to take part in the next round of charrettes are: Callander: Proposer, The Callander Partnership on behalf of Callander Community Council

Johnstone South West: Proposer, Renfrewshire Council

South Carrick, Girvan: Proposer, South Ayrshire Council