Newsletter - Links - Advertise - Contact Us - Privacy

Centenary prompts call for 'phenomenal' Art Deco Glasgow tower to rise again

April 24 2023

Centenary prompts call for 'phenomenal' Art Deco Glasgow tower to rise again

An Art Deco extravaganza could be resurrected in part amidst calls to rebuild a 'phenomenal' lost Glasgow tower.

Tait Tower, the centrepiece of the 1938 Empire Exhibition, is the focus of voices calling for the towering tribute to pierce the South Side skyline at 300ft for the first time in nearly a hundred years after being named as the UK's favourite lost structure of the era by the Art Deco Society.

Figures including MSP Paul Sweeney believe that the vote could be a springboard to reinstating the totem of Modernism.

In use for just six months, the tower was dismantled in July 1939 at the close of the exhibition, living on solely in the memories of 12.5m visitors. From an elevated position at Bellahouston Park, those who saw it could dine in a restaurant at its base and ascend to three observation decks with capacity for 600 people.

Professor Alan Dunlop commented: "I think it was a phenomenal piece of architecture; as good as anything that's ever been built by Frank Lloyd Wright in the United States. I'm not usually a person that likes to see things from the past replicated and buildings rebuilt from the Victorian era but as far as Tait's Tower is concerned I would make an exception to that. It was such a forward-looking structure."

Originally built by the Glasgow Roofing and Structural Steel Company of Possil for £60k (£5.1m in today's money) in just nine weeks, The Tower of the Empire was a symbol of the city's manufacturing prowess. All that remains of the structural steel and corrugated steel sheet plate tower are its concrete foundations but this would make it relatively straightforward to reconstruct.


#1 Posted by OssianLore on 24 Apr 2023 at 10:45 AM
A romantic notion with a certain appeal. but I can thin of 100 other projects that could better utilise any money spent on pursuing this idea never mind actually building and maintaining it. Had they reinstated this instead of building the troubled Science Tower (as was suggested at the time) that would be a different matter, pursuing it not is pure ego...
#2 Posted by A.H. on 24 Apr 2023 at 11:16 AM
And they say romance is dead. You can thin of 100 others more worthy, eh? really? 100 ? Fantastic image Dunlop's or Paul Sweeney?.
Shatner’s Bassoon
#3 Posted by Shatner’s Bassoon on 24 Apr 2023 at 12:24 PM
Is this the same Alan Dunlop who said “don’t create a sad replica of Glasgow School of Art”?
#4 Posted by A.H. on 24 Apr 2023 at 12:31 PM
The very same, what a hypac..hypocret...hyposo..he has changed his tune. Still a fantastic image tho
#5 Posted by Billy on 24 Apr 2023 at 14:41 PM
Now that would be a structure that would be a fantastic addition to the skyline and would be an iconic landmark. With a museum celebrating the various festivals over the years , a bar and restaurant and a zip wire could be a right crowd puller..
town planner
#6 Posted by town planner on 24 Apr 2023 at 15:42 PM
This would be absolutely amazing, which probably means it won't happen.
#7 Posted by Lucy on 25 Apr 2023 at 09:01 AM
"as good as anything that's ever been built by Frank Lloyd Wright in the United States." Don't think so. Provocative claim but no! Still worthy of support and love the image.
#8 Posted by Foundation on 25 Apr 2023 at 18:59 PM
Frank Lloyd Wright is overrated
Robin B's Discount
#9 Posted by Robin B's Discount on 26 Apr 2023 at 10:57 AM
Frank Lloyd Wright ate my hamster

Post your comments


All comments are pre-moderated and
must obey our house rules.


Back to April 2023

Search News
Subscribe to Urban Realm Magazine
Features & Reports
For more information from the industry visit our Features & Reports section.