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McAslan to host George Square public workshop

February 4 2013

McAslan to host George Square public workshop
John McAslan + Partners, together with their consultant team, have announced that they are to follow up their informal public discussion on the future of George Square last week with a morning workshop on Monday 18 February at Seumas McInnes' Café Gandolfi from 8am.

The occasion is intended to flesh out amended proposals developed in light of comments made during that event, with revised sketches currently being developed by the design team.

An open invitation is being extended to anyone with their own views as to how the Square might be refurbished, including representatives from Glasgow City Council.

Issues up for discussion include the best means to incorporate soft landscaping and replace the existing red tarmac. How to rank the importance of existing statues, to what use the Square should be put and how to make the space an exemplar for sustainability.

Breakfast will be provided to all participants.

In a statement a practice spokesperson said: “Following the informal public discussion which took place in George Square on Monday 28th January, John McAslan + Partners is greatly encouraged by the supportive comments made at that meeting and subsequently through social media. As a result, the practice is developing ideas in a way which we hope further captures the civic importance of George Square and people’s aspirations for its refurbishment  – essentially honouring the past and celebrating the future.”


Alan Macquarrie
#1 Posted by Alan Macquarrie on 4 Feb 2013 at 19:41 PM
You should look at green squares in other cities, like St Stephen's Green or Merrion Square in Dublin, or George Square's 'twin', Blytheswood Square. These are models to consider. If the Council want a public events space in the Town, they should put it in Osborn/King Street car park.
Anne Cannon
#2 Posted by Anne Cannon on 5 Feb 2013 at 13:14 PM
The recognition that the public should be afforded the opportunity to express both opinion and concern is welcomed by many, however, the issue of what George Square should be used for would appear to have slipped from the agenda. I do not want MY George Square to spend its time housing portable toilets and barricading. Glasgow is not short of venues and there is no need to use George Square for events with increasing regularity. Will this be addressed at this open day or will those who attend simply be fobbed off with "that's not on today's agenda"?
#3 Posted by BL on 8 Feb 2013 at 12:34 PM
I agree with Anne here. Surely 'to what use the Square should be put' should have been consulted on prior to the brief being issued to the designers, as obviously not many came up with ideas that any of the public actually liked or were indeed suitable. I walk through George Square every day on my way to and from work, and it's always dismal that the events which take up half the square end up making the place look like a building site for the vast majority of the week. Surely there has to be somewhere else to hold such events that is more suitable? George Square is a place to pass through for many, but it's always surprising to see how many stop for a while or use the square as a meeting point. It's a magnet for tourists also who all seem to want their photo taken in front of the war memorial or City Chambers. Is it too much for the square to be desined for those who actually use and love this space....a little sheltered spot to meet or grab a coffee in a sheltered, well designed coffee shop or cafe, even on a rainy day, would be a start. I suspect this kind of thing wasn't in the original brief, if there ever was one. Matheson and his cronies have wasted this opportunity through lack or foresight and any real thought.
#4 Posted by snooch69 on 18 Feb 2013 at 12:23 PM
I like everything about this design. & I am one of the harshest critics of design you will ever meet! I like that the architect has taken the time to engage with the public (although 8am was a little early for me this morning!). I like that he is from Glasgow, & clearly has the City's best interests at heart. Most of all, I like that he has listened to previous criticism & responded to it. His original design was already head a shoulders above the others - which were laughably poor. It was however just too grey & depressing. The interesting greenery he has added has redressed the balance & would create a much more welcoming space. Having attempted to design smaller pockets of soft landscaping in the past - my only concern would be how such small areas would respond to wear & tear. grass/plants struggle to get established / survive in such small pockets. Its for this reason they are usually in raised beds, where they not subjected to footfall etc. This can be addressed when the concept is worked up though. I really hope for Glasgow's sake, Councillor Matheson embraces this man's admirable efforts.

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