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Structural engineers to save condemned Glasgow landmark

August 20 2018

Structural engineers to save condemned Glasgow landmark

The tortured recent history of a B-listed Glasgow landmark may yet have a happy ending following a change of ownership and submission of plans to convert a disused seven storey block on the corner of Argyle Street and Miller Street.

In 2015 Darling Associates followed up their 2011 façade retention bid with an application for full demolition, claiming that corrosion of the hybrid steel and concrete structure made its re-use impossible.

A more recent structural assessment by David Narro Associates, aided by a wraparound advertising scaffold, has reached a markedly different conclusion however, with engineers now of the opinion that the building can be saved other than failing brickwork to the rear - which will be rebuilt in a contemporary style.

Overseen by ZM Architecture this will retain surviving interior elements such as a stone staircase, steel balustrading and lift shaft. In a statement ZM wrote: “This work is ongoing and a detailed stone enabling contract is to be organised so that full refurbishment of the façade can be undertaken with known risks and methods for stone replacement and treatment for frame conversion.

“This is a slow but methodical process and means that we will be applying to extend the approved scaffold erection period.”

Incorporating commercial uses at ground and basement levels the project will see renovation of the two primary facades with like for like replacement sash and case windows, together with an eighth floor ‘penthouse’ extension and private roof terrace in contrasting brickwork.

A dark panel clad extension will be built to the north
A dark panel clad extension will be built to the north
An eighth floor penthouse flat with private south facing roof terrace will be added
An eighth floor penthouse flat with private south facing roof terrace will be added


#1 Posted by David on 21 Aug 2018 at 13:13 PM
This is fantastic news! And an important example highlighting the false information that certain owners put together as a means of demolishing listed buildings when they don't want their profit margins to be reduced by restoring the existing structure.
Good luck to the new owners, really can't wait to see this proposal move forward.
#2 Posted by Thomas on 22 Aug 2018 at 11:50 AM
Fully agreed David.
Hopefully the same initiative or good engineer can save the Egyptian halls. I know I could.
#3 Posted by RJB on 22 Aug 2018 at 13:52 PM
Good to see the building's future will ensured. Does anyone know how tall its original neighbours were?
#4 Posted by UR on 22 Aug 2018 at 15:12 PM
Nothing substantial, it was always an outlier.
#5 Posted by RJB on 22 Aug 2018 at 17:10 PM
#6 Posted by Billy on 22 Aug 2018 at 19:47 PM
Thankfully we were listened to. Lovely building. And so much richer than what was proposed. Is anything going ahead in Merchant City-the Selfridges site? And the Egyptian halls proposal ?
#7 Posted by Snudge on 22 Aug 2018 at 22:38 PM
What penalty for Darling Associates? Shameful fake maths exercise that would have seen a listed building raised. This is common practise, should something not be done to eradicate this behaviour?
#8 Posted by EM0 on 23 Aug 2018 at 13:47 PM
Was this building not reported as having the same issue as Lion Chambers? Does that mean possibly there is more hope for bringing it back into use?
#9 Posted by Charlie_ on 23 Aug 2018 at 16:35 PM
Cool. Now we just need every other building on the block demolished and replaced with something worthy of being its neighbour.
#10 Posted by Brunel on 23 Aug 2018 at 21:14 PM
#8 with the Lion chambers I've always thought the institute of structural engineers should put their money where their mouth is and buy the building to repair and refurb. Could start an ego race with the RIAS over Thomsons Halls...

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