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Reprieve sought for condemned Wyndford tower blocks

September 20 2022

Reprieve sought for condemned Wyndford tower blocks

Moves to demolish four high-rise tower blocks at Glasgow's Wyndford estate have been questioned at a resident's meeting called to discuss a £54m regeneration programme.

Glasgow Housing Association (GHA) wants to clear 600 apartments to make way for 300 low-rise and energy-efficient homes but faces friction from opponents who argue that the embodied carbon of the towers should be factored into any decision.

Speaking out against demolition architect Alan Dunlop said: "It's odd that the housing association should be trumpeting the energy-efficient homes that would replace the Wyndford flats while ignoring the environmental destruction and waste that would happen in the event of their demolition. Surely it’s better to improve and retro-fit what’s there rather than reduce everything to rubble and dust and start all over again?

"I personally thought the attitude had started to change with the Red Road flats debacle of 2014. Some numpty with a PR qualification thought it’d be a great idea to blow up one of the blocks as part of the Commonwealth Games celebrations. It was then pointed out that the flats had been people’s homes and that other blocks were still being lived in and that blowing up what had been a community for a public-relations wheeze was a terrible and thoughtless idea, which it was and so thankfully the idea was dropped."

GHA content that demolition is a done deal, with preparatory works already underway to clear the site. It points to a tenant consultation which established that 85% backed redevelopment, rising to 87% among residents of the four tower blocks on Wyndford Road, although this is disputed by residents.


#1 Posted by spike on 20 Sep 2022 at 15:30 PM
Don't know the detail of the flats but agree where practical high rise buildings should be retained and retrofitted appropriately to save the embedded energy
town planner
#2 Posted by town planner on 20 Sep 2022 at 17:34 PM
#1 - Agree 100%. Also Scotland's land mass ain't huge but we seem determined to build unending urban/suburban sprawl :(
High tower
#3 Posted by High tower on 20 Sep 2022 at 19:39 PM
So Wheatley group claim "Preparatory works already underway". No they are not, unless you count the ploughing up of the football pitch today by a tractor! There are small strips of black netting poorly attached where the cladding was put on up the side of the buildings (the only visible difference i can see). For Wheatley to claim this is well underway is nonsense. Also, 300 houses!?! How are they going to fit 300 houses on this site? There are steep areas, areas of mature trees, and the hub community centre. The only way you could fit that amount of low rise eco homes on that site is to clear EVERYTHING. These mature trees provide
a link from Kelvingrove park to Dawsholm park for wildlife and people. I hope the multitude of joggers, dog walkers and cyclists that pass through our area take note because you can kiss goodbye to all the
mature trees to the north side of the footpath you all enjoy using if this goes ahead.
#4 Posted by David on 20 Sep 2022 at 19:41 PM
I think the issue with these flats is that retrofitting the structures would take an incredible amount of money and wouldn't be a guaranteed success....just look at retrofitted high rises in the Gorbals which are due to come down.

Many of these blocks built in the 60s were not done so with the Scottish climate in mind, and it is somewhat ridiculous of Alan Dunlop to argue against demolition on environmental grounds when these buildings, even retrofitted, would be very thermally inefficient and subsequently bad for the environment.

However I agree with #2, 300 low rise homes to replace 600 high rise homes isn't the solution here, any masterplan for the redevelopment should contain the same number of units as the high rises and follow the tenemental model of 4-5 storey perimeter blocks, proper streets and active ground floor uses.
#5 Posted by Realist on 20 Sep 2022 at 22:47 PM
Get it tore down and let's build something better and more practical.

I'm sure the drop-in-the-ocean impact to the environment can be absorbed. With the thousands of buildings being destroyed due to conflicts, earthquakes, etc. What is one more in the grand scheme? Why should we be stuck with this mess and the cost of upgrading when it will be far cheaper easier and more beneficial in the long run to flatten the thing and build something better?
#6 Posted by Peter on 21 Sep 2022 at 09:07 AM
Go with 5-6 story blocks, skip the urban village ground floor space wasting units and we're good for 600 units back on site. See the Meat Market surrounding.
NoManIsAnIsland UnlessHisNameIsWyndford
#7 Posted by NoManIsAnIsland UnlessHisNameIsWyndford on 21 Sep 2022 at 13:43 PM
The entire Wyndford estate is a dire labyrinthine insular mess. They should rebuild the whole site as a lush and urbane tenemental district with generous main avenues, clear public/private delineation and a generous riverside park. Get rid of that perimeter wall while we're at it, nobody cares about the barracks anymore, street fronting inhabited blocks is the thing.
#8 Posted by HMR on 22 Sep 2022 at 14:54 PM
Retrofitting a tower is one thing, rebuilding sustainable communities is another. The towers failed first time and will fail again. No embedded carbon can recreate streets in the sky.

Since when Did Alan Dunlop care about embodied carbon, didn't he want whats left of the Mac demolished not so long ago.
Mr Retrofit
#9 Posted by Mr Retrofit on 26 Sep 2022 at 22:29 PM
Retrofitting is a good idea, the three tower blocks at Cedar Street by Collective and work by MEARU is a great example of this.

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