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Washington Street skyscraper to tame the Kingston Bridge

March 22 2023

Washington Street skyscraper to tame the Kingston Bridge

Proposals for new build-to-rent homes on a brownfield site at 82-90 Washington Street are being brought forward by CA Ventures and Hoskins Architects.

Previously home to Snodgrass Flour Mill, the 0.3ha site will be activated by ground floor commercial uses and new public realm, reconnecting the former warehouse district to the waterfront.

The difficult urban site faces challenges from the Kingston Bridge undercroft as well as the presence of a major electricity substation, demanding an 'exceptional landmark project signalling urban redensification'.

Communicating the ambition behind what is proposed the applicant wrote: "The redevelopment of the site provides all the ingredients for a 'landmark' development of quality with required ambition and investment which will allow an inventive and creative approach."

The preferred massing solution envisages a giant tower dwarfing the motorway below and rising from a mixed-use plinth comprising retail and leisure. An enhanced east-to-west connection through the urban block will also be established.

A formal planning application is not expected until June. 


Sue Pearman
#1 Posted by Sue Pearman on 22 Mar 2023 at 12:35 PM
It's always curious to see these 'BIG resi tower' proposals that pop up from time to time. And how reality inevitably humbles them with the 60m limit of the domestic building regs in Scotland and - like the Elphinstone tower (remember that?) that was originally proposed for the Scottish Power site - from the lack of ability to phase the development of a single tower, which means it becomes too large an investment on a marginal site with no financial return until full completion.
town planner
#2 Posted by town planner on 22 Mar 2023 at 14:49 PM
Well let's hope it happens this time Sue! Some elevation in this location is exactly what we need.
Washington st. monument
#3 Posted by Washington st. monument on 22 Mar 2023 at 15:33 PM
#2 I'd be interested to hear your rationale for the height there?

From my perspective, it seems like the transit infrastructure serving that plot and neighbouring urbanism (or lack thereof) aren't at all conducive to building at height. Exposing my bias here but given how much CA likely paid for that plot, the height seems like a cynical cash-grab.
#4 Posted by Spike on 22 Mar 2023 at 18:42 PM
Like this and agree with comments re height and redensification.
#5 Posted by Roddy_ on 23 Mar 2023 at 13:59 PM
I have some sympathy with #3's point but worth recalling that building tall in this location is encouraged in the Local Development Plan.
Your other points about transit and neighbouring urbanism are relevant though. If this alongside Tradeston are to be the new emerging neighbourhoods in the city we need to have better than Fastlink and we need better services and better public places to be brought forward before 200, perhaps 300 people arrive on site. So far as I am aware, there are no extant plans to bring forward the Clyde linear park as envisaged in the local DRF's and nothing to extend the quality urban realm of the Avenues projects. Not-I would submit-a good portent for what is to come.
As for the tower, it would be nice if the city had a coherent and detailed policy to guide their development both at plinth level and at a strategic level too. Otherwise we'll get what has come before - the classic fish tanks made of graph paper and blank frontage in places that can ill afford it (see Buchanan Wharf at Kingston Street).
I'm surprised more developers aren't getting on board given the seemingly laissez faire approach to design governance and the 'Glasgow is open for business' mantra that is brandished in front of any development of Major significance.
Fat Bloke on Tour
#6 Posted by Fat Bloke on Tour on 24 Mar 2023 at 12:04 PM
Residential / domestic buildings -- the 60M rule.
When did that come into force and why?

How does the rule compare with the rest of Europe / the civilised world?

Looks very prescriptive.
Overly prescriptive.
#7 Posted by pooka on 28 Mar 2023 at 15:22 PM
definitely nothing phallic in that sketch nope
Fat Bloke on Tour
#8 Posted by Fat Bloke on Tour on 29 Mar 2023 at 12:38 PM
Down negative man / down ...

At some point we will run out of gap sites and we will have to build upwards.

The lack of hot digger action in that corner of the city reeks of land banking / greed / lack of economic activity so the developer should be applauded for trying to get things moving.

As for the "big wanger" angle -- you do know that women have a choice / men don't.

Any male architect working that angle only highlights there own insecurities -- might explain the current Glesga design vibe for the hobbit sanctuary look groundscraper ...

Double bluff in play perhaps?

So for the general male population -- we can only express our waste water with the equipment that our parents gene pool has given us.

Luckily in the lottery of life the bar is set very low in a lot of cases -- luckily does it have a pulse is the only question on the agenda for many people.

Shatner's Bassoon
#9 Posted by Shatner's Bassoon on 29 Mar 2023 at 15:51 PM
FBoT What are you on about?
Kelley's DeForest
#10 Posted by Kelley's DeForest on 29 Mar 2023 at 16:09 PM
"In All The Universe, Three Million Galaxies Like This, And In All Of That... And Perhaps More... Only One Of Each Of Us."

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