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Scotland’s ‘BSF’ given £300m boost

The Scottish government has injected £300 million into its schools building programme, aimed at delivering 35 primary and secondary schools

The cash will kickstart its ‘Schools for the future’ programme which is in early stages with all contracts yet to be signed.

Opportunities for architects could however be short-lived, with the Scottish parliament, following next year’s election, having to make £1 billion worth of cuts. In England the BSF project could be scrapped with all contracts signed this year currently under review.

The Scottish Futures Trust, which runs the project, said each council would be free to decide its own bidding process.

However architect Alan Dunlop suggested the programme was similar to a Public Private Partnership (PPP) and would be unlikely to benefit the profession with that the work was already ‘sewn up’.

He added: ‘[I’m] not expecting anything approaching excellence or even good design. Just better than [the dilapidated schools] before.’

The secondary schools projects will be funded on a 67-33 funding basis between Holyrood and local councils, and primaries’ funding split 50-50.

Construction work on the first tranche of Scottish schools is expected to start later this year, with secondary schools competing in 2013.

The 35 new schools are spread across Aberdeen, Aberdeenshire, Borders, Dumfries and Galloway, Eilean Siar and Highland regions.

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