‘It’s not through lack of try­ing it’s empty’

Evening Telegraph (First Edition) - - Court Reports - BY STEVEN RAE

IT’S been de­scribed by city coun­cil­lors as “an eye­sore”.

But now, the owner of the graf­fi­ti­hit North Shore House in Dundee Tech­nol­ogy Park has hit back — claim­ing his firm is “do­ing all it can” to get the build­ing back into use.

The derelict fa­cil­ity in Luna Place has been ex­ten­sively vandalised, with al­most all of its win­dows smashed and the ex­te­rior and in­te­rior cov­ered in spray paint and hit by other dam­age.

The build­ing is the first thing many driv­ers see as they en­ter Dundee from the south.

Win­ston Phair, a di­rec­tor of Bawn­mead­ows Ltd, which owns the prop­erty, said the firm had ap­plied for a change of use. He said de­spite the se­cu­rity mea­sures that had been put in place, van­dals were still ac­cess­ing the site, and called on po­lice to pa­trol t he park more reg­u­larly.

He said: “I’m based in North­ern Ire­land, so with the best will in the world, it’s im­pos­si­ble for me to mon­i­tor the site all the time.

“We put a se­cu­rity fence around it in May last year, and spent a lot of money on it.

“We’d like to see the po­lice there more of­ten, keep­ing an eye on it. “When we bought the build­ing, we had hoped to lease it out or sell it, but there just hasn’t been the de­mand for an of­fice of that size there. Then there was an ap­pli­ca­tion made for a car show­room in June. “It’s not through lack of try­ing that it’s sit­ting empty.” Mr Phair said that on Fri­day, ground­work to fill in trenches as­so­ci­ated with elec­tri­cal ca­bling had been com­pleted, at a cost of about £80,000. He added: “Our plan now is to di­vide the build­ing into 12 smaller re­tail units, but again, that’s on the ba­sis of the coun­cil giv­ing us the go ahead. I wrote to Coun­cil­lor Fraser Macpher­son to try to get some help and ad­vice when the last ap­pli­ca­tion went in, but never heard back.”

Mr Macpher­son (inset), whose West End ward in­cludes the Tech­nol­ogy Park, pre­vi­ously de­scribed the build­ing as be­ing in “a sorry state”, but re­jected Mr Phair’s claims that he ig­nored him.

He said: “There is a strict code of con­duct, mean­ing no coun­cil­lors can com­ment on plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tions in pri­vate or in pub­lic.

“I would en­cour­age Mr Phair to speak to coun­cil plan­ning of­fi­cers about any fu­ture ap­pli­ca­tions. I did no­tice that some work has been done and any­thing to im­prove and tidy up the site is to be wel­comed.” Our

Win­ston Phair, a di­rec­tor of Bawn­mead­ows Ltd, which owns North Shore House in Dundee Tech­nol­ogy Park.

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