THE first stage of a major project to create a massive assembly shed at the BAE Systems shipyard in Govan is underway.
A large disused wet basin at the yard is being infilled to create a site for the huge structure which is part of £150million investment by the company.
City planners approved the changes last month. A design statement submitted with the planning application explained: “BAE Systems requires a world class facility to meet the UK’s National Shipbuilding Programme.
“It also requires a facility that will enhance current working practices, improves efficiency, provides a platform for technological innovation, and improves the health and well-being of production operatives.
“The main requirement of the project brief is to maximise the capability for shipbuilding within a controlled environment, removing the need for ships to be constructed externally as is currently the case.”
At present full ships longer than 75 metres cannot be constructed under cover at Govan.
Glasgow MSP Paul Sweeney wrote on Twitter: “The biggest capital investment that Glasgow’s shipbuilding industry has seen since the 1960s is underway at BAE Systems’s Govan Shipyard. At 170 metres long, 81 metres wide and 49 meters high, enclosing 675,000 cubic metres of usable space, the ship assembly hall will be one of the UK’s largest buildings.
“The ambitious construction schedule will see the Clydeside landmark completed next year, in time for assembly of the fourth Type 26 frigate.”
“Creating a fully indoor shipbuilding production process in Glasgow is an ambition that has been more than a decade in the making. It’s a brilliant achievement for Clyde shipbuilding.”
The decision report issued by city officials stated: “The new assembly hall represents a transformational moment for the identity of shipbuilding on the River Clyde, helping to shape the future and adding to the rich heritage that already exists.”
There will also be improvements to the yard entrance from Holmfauld Road with tree planting, soft landscaping, plaza, new gate house, and reconfiguration of existing facilities.