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Elder & Cannon lead 12 storey Cowcaddens student tower

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October 17 2016

Elder & Cannon lead 12 storey Cowcaddens student tower
Elder & Cannon Architects have drafter plans for a 12 storey student tower constituting 308 bed spaces at New City Road, Glasgow, on behalf of Bankell Developments.

Situated over the road from Glasgow School of Art’s soon to be delivered School of Fine Art the brick build will punctuate a key sightline along the Great Western Road corridor as it is bisected by an elevated section of the M8 motorway through Cowcaddens.

Adopting a triangular floorplate the scheme will incorporate a security controlled lane and courtyard between Phoenix Road and New City Road which doubles as a principal entrance space with ground floor devoted to amenity and social spaces.

Outlining their proposal the architects wrote: “The ground floor of the building is given over entirely to the active social spaces and management facilities and is enhanced by the generous provision of a double height common hall along the majority of the North elevation, overlooked by gallery desks and mezzanine spaces, providing complexity and richness of spatial organisation. This grand hall, related social spaces and double height entrance reception afford an open and democratic transparency to the full length of the New City Road elevation, with full height glazed curtain walling set back behind a high quality cast stone colonnade.”

In an effort to tame the hostile local environment the building will be afforded a sense of scale in a bid to anchor it within a fragmented landscape of scrappy green space, disjointed housing and chaotic road network, with a top floor roof terrace also on offer to students.
Heavy massing will seek to mitigate noise and pollution from an elevated section of the M8
Heavy massing will seek to mitigate noise and pollution from an elevated section of the M8
The tower follows precedents set at Laurieston and Glasgow City Mission
The tower follows precedents set at Laurieston and Glasgow City Mission


#1 Posted by tara on 17 Oct 2016 at 12:27 PM
FFS - Stick out, much? why exactly does this have to be 12 storey tower? Unless this is part of a comprehensive, plan lead approach to this rather grim part of Glasgow I cannot see how this can possibly be allowed? What this area needs is streets blocks and spaces, not more disjointed chaos. Sure it is a lovely building, but seriously.....
Paul Sweeney
#2 Posted by Paul Sweeney on 17 Oct 2016 at 13:20 PM
This is exactly the sort of scale we need to re-establish New City Road as the continuation of Great Western Road into the city centre. The fragmentation of this area is one of the most toxic legacies of the M8. Gehl's 'Underline' concept for rehabilitating New City Road and the new GSofA campus at the former Stow College building will also help to address this.

More fundamentally we need to recreate a solid urban grid and street edges in that entire area bounded by St George's Road, New City Road, Garscube Road, extending right up Garscube Road to Queens Cross and up Keppochhill Road to Sighthill. That district - Cowlairs, Possil, Port Dundas, Woodside - is one of the most depopulated, oppressive and fragmented urban environments in the city and revitalising and stitching it back into the city centre grid at Cowcaddens and Garnethill would transform the fortunes of the north of Glasgow radically.
#3 Posted by David on 17 Oct 2016 at 20:00 PM
Absolutely agree with the second comment, this must be the best proposal for the charing cross corridor to emerge in recent years (second only to covering the M8 with a linear park). High quality detailing, decent materiality palette and scale executed beautifully. If only the hideous Scottish Power HQ had followed a similar design. Let's hope this building acts as a precedent for the entire area around Cowcaddens/New City Road/Garscube Road, it is an embarrassing wasteland so close to central Glasgow.
#4 Posted by Terra on 17 Oct 2016 at 20:57 PM
Agree with Paul. This is hopefully the beginning of the regeneration of an area of the city that should be a thriving link to the GWR into the city centre.
Yes it kind of sticks out at the moment but with more developments in the area which compliment this building it should be great going forward.
#5 Posted by Cadmonkey on 18 Oct 2016 at 12:18 PM
Is that really a tree proposed at the top floor?
Matthew Ansell
#6 Posted by Matthew Ansell on 19 Oct 2016 at 16:27 PM
Love, elegant and if built, could provide a (much needed) benchmark for how to pull of a quality tall building..Good luck
#7 Posted by Sven on 22 Oct 2016 at 16:20 PM
I was wondering about the tree as well - surely it is not a long term feature.
#8 Posted by Parkguy61 on 31 Jul 2019 at 13:50 PM
I agree with others. I don't see how such a 12 storey monolithic block can possible be regarded as sympathetic to its environment. Surely its impact on the city skyline should be taken into consideration. Even form the description it sounds like a fortress which will contribute little to the development of a more cohesive community. Do student accommodation ever?

Elder and Cannon's Lauriston offers a bleak urban landscape of hard edges and austere detailing.
I despair at those who think this is a benchmark for a quality tall building for the city as it could be interchangeably offices, hotel or, as it purports to be housing. Then again maybe the owners (Investors) are future proofing it for the inevitable future downturn in student accommodation needs.

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