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Holmes Miller in line to complete Park Circus vision

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May 25 2015

Holmes Miller in line to complete Park Circus vision
Holmes Miller Architects could be handed the job of completing Charles Wilson’s Park Circus vision after Leeds based developer Espresso Property emerged as front runner to purchase the last unbuilt plot of land at Park Quadrant.

Glasgow councillors will decide on Thursday whether to sanction the  £6.3m land deal, clearing the way for 111 flats over six storeys, with a landscaped parking deck underneath, on the site of what has become mature woodland.

Opting for a contemporary interpretation of its classical surroundings Holmes Miller’s design is said to employ blonde sandstone to the front and gable elevations, respecting the curvature and scale of the existing quadrant.

Rear elevations would be faced in stone rainscreen with roofspaces given a contemporary flavour by way of feature rooflights clad in slate and zinc.

A council report noted: “Bay windows are proposed on the front and gable elevations with the fenestration ordered with vertical emphasis and the south facing rear elevations featuring balconies. High quality boundary treatment is proposed with stone and ornate metalwork on the Park Quadrant boundary and stone to the rear lane. Entrances to the flat closes feature double height pre-cast stone with decorative metal work detailing.”

The scheme follows the collapse of a 2006 Stewart Milne and Page\Park bid for the site amidst onset of the financial crisis
 Vehicular access would be offered by way of an upgraded Park Circus Lane to the rear
Vehicular access would be offered by way of an upgraded Park Circus Lane to the rear
Eleven bids were received for the prized land in total, each of which was scored via a custom metric weighted at 60 per cent planning and design with the remainder based on net price.
Eleven bids were received for the prized land in total, each of which was scored via a custom metric weighted at 60 per cent planning and design with the remainder based on net price.

18 Comments

Big Chantelle
#1 Posted by Big Chantelle on 25 May 2015 at 15:51 PM
"Opting for a contemporary interpretation of its classical surroundings Holmes Miller’s design..."

Ah, the modernist brigade strikes again. Here we have an UNCOMPLETED design. Why not complete it in the same style as the rest of the EXISTING buildings?

This is an example of urban vandalism. The reason for the 'contemporary' interpretation is because 1. It's cheaper and 2. The architects of today are to lazy/untalented to match the ones of the past.

There's plenty of places in Glasgow for 'contemporary interpretations'. Why must if be imposed on an already existing area with its own established classical character?

Oh, and might have guessed there'd be some zinc in there. Can't have slate roofs. Nah, gotta be zinc.
The CMB
#2 Posted by The CMB on 25 May 2015 at 17:12 PM
The CMB approve of the zinc and would encourage the use of concrete in lieu of sandstone. We would comment further but as there are no images of the proposal an informed decision on how much more urban vandalism is required to pass our standards is not possible.
Gavin Fraser
#3 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 25 May 2015 at 18:45 PM
#1 I'm sorry but that is a completely ignorant thing to say pertaining to architects of today, and I would actually contest that point. Have you worked in a current day architecture practice, or have you ever done any actual research into the roles of contemporary architects in relation to architects of the 19th century? I highly doubt that you have. I would agree that due to the nature of the area, and the fact that we see some of the finest examples of Georgian and Victorian townhouse architecture in the UK that the project requires a sensitive approach. However calling Architects of today lazy is unforgivable. Going through 7 years of training, through several different modules including Structural design, Environmental design- which relates to light, acoustics, environment and sustainability- History of Architecture and Urban studies; yes believe it or not Chantelle, Contemporary architects do indeed study, extensively I should point out, the architecture of the past and how to be sympathetic, they also need to practice in a Principles of construction module, in which is all about keeping a building dry and air tight. And then finally they have to have the flair, and the drive to commit to ridiculous hours and financial hardship. This is just Architecture school. Then in practice you are given a poor salary, to begin with, considering the length of degree, and are tasked with continued development and learning. And you call them lazy? In contrast because I have written a dissertation on this matter, I can assure you that although creatively Brilliant, many of the architects in Glasgow of the 18th and 19th centuries (not so much the early 20th century) did not require nearly a quarter of the knowledge current "lazy" architects need to practice today. In fact, even if you go to the Mitchel library and study the old plans, you will see a complete lack of structural, environmental and contextual detail. The true nature of the name 'Architect' was lost during this period. I am not criticizing these Architects, but more your appreciation and insulting ignorance to Architects of today.

I'm sure I will be branded as the title of 'lefty modernist concrete brigade title.
P.s this development would probably more likely fall under post modernism.

Thanks
Gavin Fraser
#4 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 25 May 2015 at 19:04 PM
Oh I forgot to mention that I do however agree with you that architecture of today is too focused on budgetary constraint.
Roddy
#5 Posted by Roddy on 25 May 2015 at 20:19 PM
The pressure is really on Holmes Miller to produce something of subtlety and sensitivity with high quality materials and detailing. This is a site which cannot absorb anything less than first rate.
Their Minerva St housing was fairly competent, but on the other hand this practice is responsible for the thoroughly depressing Oatlands development, a project which has the look and feel of a future slum.
Most architects would give their eye teeth to be involved with that site so let’s hope for some of the Minerva and less of the Oatlands.
Fitz Hat
#6 Posted by Fitz Hat on 26 May 2015 at 08:00 AM
Just a thought, but maybe UR should give readers a clue where this development is.
Charles
#7 Posted by Charles on 26 May 2015 at 08:54 AM
Big Chantelle,

Maybe not embarrass yourself by criticising a design that you obviously haven't seen.
modernish
#8 Posted by modernish on 26 May 2015 at 16:36 PM
A cursory glance at the GCC report allows one to note that the competing bidders were requested to make a modern interpretation to Charles Wilson's vision. However, like many a ukip candidate at the GE, it looks as though BC may have been hacked...or certainly I hope that is the case. BC has often said that it’s not all about what people think of each other and their predispositions but a forum to discuss proposals as presented, as there are no proposals in this instance it would be illogical for BC to get so bent out of shape over something that we don’t know anything about. So I would concur with those who engaged their brain before their fingers and say; it's probably best to see what the proposals look like before sticking the boot in, or otherwise. Great site, great opportunity, no reason why there shouldn't be something quite special proposed. The increased density and very high potential for developer profit would justify the use of high quality materials and design quality. After all in this location the marketing is going to be all about “timeless elegance” and the likes so they can hardly (surely?) try to sell an absolute dog of a building. I took a lead from your post Roddy and took a wander round to Minerva Street at lunchtime. It is quite handsome and responds well to its historic neighbours. It's a pity that it's something of an island between some big retail sheds and business units but in a more complete setting such as Park Circus it would work better still.
Big Chantelle
#9 Posted by Big Chantelle on 26 May 2015 at 21:35 PM
Ah modernish, yet another comment by you which deals with what I have said.

Why not use the comment section to articulate your views?

And I'll comment on anything I like -- the mere fact that the original, uncompleted park circus is not being completed as it was (the architects own words testify to this) means I will not approve of it. Simple as that.
modernish
#10 Posted by modernish on 27 May 2015 at 09:46 AM
@#9 - I actually went to great lengths to avoid commenting on your views, but you can read into what you want. I'll wait to see what the proposal is before commenting. You can tear into me at that point, but I'd be grateful if you could hold off until then. Many thanks.
Perry Mason
#11 Posted by Perry Mason on 27 May 2015 at 14:00 PM
Ahh Big Chantelle, ignoring Gavin Fraser's intentionally are we?
Gavin Fraser
#12 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 27 May 2015 at 18:32 PM
Looks like it Perry.
james
#13 Posted by james on 27 May 2015 at 20:56 PM
Dear Gavvers,

I read your essay and was greatly amused. I should have, but I couldn't really let it pass without comment.

'Contemporary architects do indeed study, extensively I should point out, the architecture of the past and how to be sympathetic', - Wow! Gee whiz! Is that it? Is that not the Town Planning course you're talking about? How about heterotopia or even parasitism for that matter?

'Going through 7 years of training' - Shockarooney! As long as that? Awwhhhh!!! Boo Hoo!!!!!

'many of the architects in Glasgow of the 18th and 19th centuries (not so much the early 20th century) did not require nearly a quarter of the knowledge' - What? Were you there? Are you sure it wasn't quite 5/16ths? So you're saying architects like Greek Thomson and William Playfair were just lazy shits then? Have I got that right?

'I have written a dissertation on this matter' - Oh, sorry, I must bow to your clearly superior knowledge then. Golly - a dissertation? Is that something important? Big, like?

In fact, even if you go to the Mitchel [sic] library and study the old plans, you will see a complete lack of structural, environmental and contextual detail. - A complete lack? I seem to recall lots of feet and inch dimensions of timber and steel sections from Dean of Guild drawings say by Honeyman and Mackintosh et al. I take it your P.I. allows you to do the same?

I take it you missed the afternoon they did the 'module' on humility then?

Astonishing really, come to think of it, just how great you'll be! Certainly one to watch with all that knowledge! ;-)
Big Chantelle
#14 Posted by Big Chantelle on 27 May 2015 at 22:23 PM
@Perry Mason said "Ahh Big Chantelle, ignoring Gavin Fraser's intentionally are we?"

Yes would be the answer to that.

After the 'looks as though BC might have been hacked....." comment, I thought, why bother reading the rest of this diatribe. It's already meant to be condescending. But Gav knew that. I'm sure the rest of it was world class lefty archy-talk and I'm sure the rest of the Motherwell polytechnic school of concrete modernists will indulge him.
Gavin Fraser
#15 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 29 May 2015 at 00:45 AM
Ah James you've actually amused me in a good way. 7 years is a long time, and it is intensive. I'm not sure if you are an architect yourself, or been through any stages of Architecture school so I dare not comment. However it is that very statement of sarcasm in relation to workload that trivialises Architecture as a career, and rationalises peoples perceptions that architects are lazier today than they were of the past.

What do you think by the way? Are architects of today lazier than in the past? After all, that was the basis of my comment. (i'm genuinely interested)

Also my whole comment was surrounding the argument that architects of today require a more diversified appreciation of architecture than 200 years ago. In relation to the 'quarter of knowledge', surely you understand that I was speaking figuratively. And I never once called architects of the past lazy. I stated the dissertation fact to inform; in this case chantelle, that I wasn't pulling my opinion out of no where.

Astonishing really that we even have young creative people willing to go through Arch school when we have people in which enjoy making a mockery of their work and career.
Gavin Fraser
#16 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 29 May 2015 at 00:49 AM
Chantelle have you mixed up your comments? I'd advise you look over your own first comment to the 'diatribe' towards contemporary architects.

james
#17 Posted by james on 29 May 2015 at 10:06 AM
Dear Gavin,
I have to say, i don't really know what it is you're on about. I suspect we live in two different world views. I do not recognise much, if anything, of what you are trying to say. I guess we have completely different 'values' then. Something that is not so measurable or tangible. I am not interested in others perceptions of architects, laziness or knowledge, whatever all that is etc. All i know is i have worked now for over thirty years post 'education' and regard what i do as vocational and not a 'career' whatever that is. yes, i am a registered architect.
My mocking was aimed at what you were arguing, not architects work or career.

All the best.
Gavin Fraser
#18 Posted by Gavin Fraser on 29 May 2015 at 14:47 PM
#17
Perhaps i'm just a naive youngster; probably. And this is probably the case, our difference of views is apparent. Oh well. And fantastic, do you still practice?

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