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Towering student residences approved for Glasgow’s Cathedral Street

October 14 2015

Towering student residences approved for Glasgow’s Cathedral Street
Plans to build a 398 bed student residential tower designed by Urban Office Architects at 355 Cathedral Street, Glasgow, have been approved by planners.

The 19 storey tower has been advanced by Forrest Furnishing, owners of an existing retail store, which will be demolished to make way for the scheme

Clad in a combination of zinc, polished concrete, glazing, fritted glazing and powder coated aluminium the tower will meet the street with a ground floor reception and meeting space, above which will be a mezzanine level offering occupants a fully equipped gym, study bays and movie theatre.

A rooftop viewing deck will also be provided with heather sedum, a feature sculpture sitting alongside seating and a ‘coffee hub’ with glass balustrading.

Public realm to Cathedral Street and North Hannover Street would be upgraded with new stone and granite paving.
36 studio flats will be spread over floors 17 and 18
36 studio flats will be spread over floors 17 and 18
A feature cylindrical structure marks access to the roof
A feature cylindrical structure marks access to the roof

The new tower will be largely obscured from george Square by the City of Glasgow College
The new tower will be largely obscured from george Square by the City of Glasgow College


#1 Posted by Rabbie on 14 Oct 2015 at 10:19 AM
Oh jesus...
#2 Posted by espea on 14 Oct 2015 at 10:20 AM
is this a joke?
#3 Posted by Wonky on 14 Oct 2015 at 10:34 AM
I in no way object to this structure. Its urban & sits in fairly well to the surroundings...what I do object to is the destruction if yet another listed building (one of very few left in that area)- particularly when you consider the square brick jobby (Strathclyde Uni?) adjacent. The little white Methodist b-listed church is a lovely wee gem...
#4 Posted by David on 14 Oct 2015 at 10:37 AM
Absolutely horrific. If the council are going to permit something that is several times the height of the current building they should at least insist that the detailing and cladding is of a high quality, especially given the site's prominence in central Glasgow. Disgraceful design
#5 Posted by qmd on 14 Oct 2015 at 10:52 AM
where is that white church? how can they demolish the listed building?
#6 Posted by GD on 14 Oct 2015 at 11:56 AM

Horrific and very disappointing for Glasgow, however, seems to be a theme of late.

Think the 'feature sculpture' needs to be shoved where the sun don't shine.
#7 Posted by Fraser on 14 Oct 2015 at 12:12 PM
Actually, I believe that the church was in fact not listed at all - last time I checked anyway.
#8 Posted by Alf on 14 Oct 2015 at 12:12 PM
Will this not be quite prominent from George Square, any other visuals UR?
#9 Posted by Demo on 14 Oct 2015 at 12:29 PM
If it was the intention to make a new build look like a re-clad/ refurbishment then, job done!
#10 Posted by UR on 14 Oct 2015 at 13:07 PM
@Alf - Sure. The City of Glasgow College's North Hannover Street campus will largely obscure it.
#11 Posted by Alf on 14 Oct 2015 at 13:12 PM
Thanks UR, that's something I suppose.
#12 Posted by Tom on 14 Oct 2015 at 13:17 PM
Have the architects completely forgotten to create a relationship with the street so as to give something back to not only the people who live in these shoe boxes but to the people who look at it and walk around its windswept corners. Great juxtaposition with the Victorian building next door...
#13 Posted by Alf on 14 Oct 2015 at 13:38 PM
I've looked at this again and cant help but feel its so dated already. It reminds me of Skypark or some reclad job.
Sir Ano
#14 Posted by Sir Ano on 14 Oct 2015 at 13:51 PM
Is this a reclad of the remaining Red Road Flats?
#15 Posted by Stephen on 14 Oct 2015 at 14:06 PM
I don't really object to the mass but the execution is woeful. Cheap cladding. Nonsense decoration on top. Poor articulation.
Good to densify the number of people living in this area though.
'Heather Sedum'? Is that like a Lamb Banana?
A Local Pleb
#16 Posted by A Local Pleb on 14 Oct 2015 at 15:15 PM
The only justification for a building of this height is the college building opposite and it is an unfortunate abortion!
The quality of what the planning authority is permitting is spiralling downwards.
I know planning departments have been criticised for having been overly critical of design in the past but we are at risk of going to the other extreme!
I have no problem with high rise developments if the have some sense of quality...this however smacks of cheap as chips modular construction akin to that adopted by many hotel chains.
Oh dear of dear!?!?
#17 Posted by DG on 14 Oct 2015 at 15:30 PM
We cannot loose the church listed or not listed, this is a disgusting waste! Can this building not be transferred to the old City of Glasgow College buildign that is looking for a buyer?? This is a disgrace GCC an utter disgrace!!!!
Susan Caroline Triesman
#18 Posted by Susan Caroline Triesman on 14 Oct 2015 at 15:32 PM
One of teh miost pleasant things about George Square and surrounds is the people-scaled hight of the buildings. This is a monstrosity which will make the place more annymous.
#19 Posted by Apath?s on 14 Oct 2015 at 16:02 PM
Between this and Bath Street student halls have GCC just given up? Also, how many students is Glasgow expecting ...?!
#20 Posted by DG on 14 Oct 2015 at 16:42 PM
Is there any way left to oppose the demolition of the church that currently stands here? I ahve asked Glasgow Buildings Preservation Trust to make a comment on the loss of this building!
#21 Posted by Charlie_ on 14 Oct 2015 at 17:41 PM
It's vanishingly rare that i object to development on purely aesthetic grounds but this is beyond the pale. It's as bad as the lego towers Leeds has put up.
Jamie J
#22 Posted by Jamie J on 14 Oct 2015 at 18:51 PM
It's almost as bad as the Renfield St cinema building. Gunshot metal and jaunty angles towering next to another monster we've grown to love. This will be a new addition to Glasgow's ugly sisters. Joy. :/
#23 Posted by Jamie on 14 Oct 2015 at 21:25 PM
Horrendous. That is all. What even is that thing hanging off the roof in #2?
Glen Ferguson
#24 Posted by Glen Ferguson on 15 Oct 2015 at 07:25 AM
I think Cathedral st needs some investment before all these college buildings where rebuilt cathedral st was looking rundown . but now with the new building currently being built and the new buildings ajacent its gave cathedral st a breath of fresh air and i think this will be a welcome addition in my eyes it looks amazing. charles oakley is starting to look very rundown aswell.

The new student accomodation on bath / pitt st is an eyesore and does not fit in with the surroundings which should be taken to consideration .
#25 Posted by Demagawd on 15 Oct 2015 at 11:07 AM
Are they just shifting the tower blocks from the outskirts to the centre of the city now… also what happens to all this student accommodation when they go away for three months in the summer. Its about time we had a new council election….
Cyril Sneer
#26 Posted by Cyril Sneer on 15 Oct 2015 at 12:19 PM
In planning terms I think this both competes in height and interrupt views of the adjacent B listed Wylie/Shanks tower. Also, the “distinctive vocabulary of Le Corbusier's modular system.. and roof top forms” have been disrespectfully referenced within this design. Its competitiveness in mass and their crude stylistic roof-top mirroring of the adjacent listed-landmark shows a conceptual naivety. On a more positive note, it’s far better than their earlier façade attempts which looked reminiscent a primary school art project, but this is still an ill-conceived building and expresses a terrible lack of respect for our built environment.
#27 Posted by DG on 15 Oct 2015 at 13:27 PM
Hi All, I have started a petition to make GCC reconsider bulldozing the church that stand on this site, please sign it if you can! Best Wishes
#28 Posted by Cadmonkey on 15 Oct 2015 at 17:00 PM
I think this will fit into Glasgow quite well.
#29 Posted by Fraser on 17 Oct 2015 at 10:32 AM
I don't mind this at all.
#30 Posted by John on 25 Aug 2017 at 20:33 PM
Once again the people of townhead are being run roughshod over. We already have four new student accommodations with no consultation whatsoever. Now another one. Townhead is an area with families. what about us
#31 Posted by Billy on 26 Aug 2017 at 10:46 AM
The student accommodation is required because of its proximity to the universities and colleges. Townhead is therefore ideally situated for such accommodation. That and the availability of land. Students bring much needed revenue to areas. The developments are on the edge of Townhead and have not replaced accommodation meant for families. The alternative would be plots of empty land, multi storey car parks due to proximity to city centre or industrial units. I doubt if GCC have the resources to build social housing in the area or if they consider that more social housing is necesssary in the area.
#32 Posted by Linda on 21 Jan 2018 at 01:07 AM
Shocking decision to demolish that beautiful building! why was it never listed. I've lived in Townhead for over 43 years and truly saddened that nearly the whole area especially the residential family maisonette houses that have been bought and turned into HMOs for student accommodation also the filtering of students into the 4 high rise blocks of flats, the community is turning into a campus and our Community sadly has to accept that

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