THE cost to revamp Dumbarton’s oldest building has jumped by more than half a million pounds before a brick is laid - and is slated to cost four times its worth in the next 40 years.

In a report due before the council infrastructure, regeneration and economic development (IRED) committee, council officers say the initial cost has risen from £4.35 million to £5.05 million for the whole project.

Under the plans, Glencairn House will be the new site for the town’s library, with the current building on Strathleven Place housing some of West Dunbartonshire’s museum collection, which has remained out of view in recent years.

In previous reports, it appears council officers did not take into account the fit out required at the current library, which is estimated to amount to around £700,000.

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In the lifetime of the project, predicted to be over the next 40 years, it is estimated that ongoing costs could cost the council as much as £16 million, £800,000 more than the current arrangement.

A saving will be made on the cost of maintaining the property moving forward, however, loan charges incurred by the redevelopment project will drive the cost up by £2.75 million over the next 40 years.

In order to pay for the upfront costs of the plans, the council will use £1 million from its own regeneration capital fund, £1.75 million from loans in the capital plan and they hope to be able to secure £2.3 million of external funding from outside sources.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund and the Regeneration Capital Fund have been pinpointed as potential sources of funding.

An appraisal by economic research consultancy EKOS in November 2017 claimed that 25 construction jobs would be created if the project got the go ahead, bringing in £540,000 to the local economy if local people were hired.

It was also believed that the new location of the library, which would be on the town’s High Street, would help to maintain visitor numbers, which currently sits at 60,000 people every year.

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According to the EKOS, the visitor numbers would bring in an additional £1.9 million over 15 years across West Dunbartonshire.

Iain McLaren, the convener of the IRED committee, told the Reporter: “I am very happy that this report is coming to committee this month.

“A lot of time and effort has been spent refining and preparing it, and the feedback from the community has been excellent.

“I am really looking forward to taking this project forward, and seeing Glencairn House brought back into use. Once complete, it will be a huge asset to Dumbarton Town Centre.”