Tentative BTR moves gain momentum in Glasgow
April 23 2020
Chris Stewart Group has rethought plans to build a mixed-use complex off George Square, Glasgow, by swapping out proposed student accommodation for mainstream residential accommodation at Love Loan.
A formal amendment by Hoskins Architects seeks to change the use if a 20-storey tower (block D) on Martha Street to build to rent flats, including several facade revisions such as additional west-facing windows. As before the tower will be finished in grey brick with precast concrete string courses delineating each floor.
Outlining a cautious approach in light of marginal expected profits the developer concedes that the homes will not meet maximum energy efficiency standards, by omitting a district heating solution in favour of electric panels and gas-fired boilers. CSG Projects wrote: "The economic viability of development of large scale residential in Glasgow city centre is marginal, at best, as evidenced by the lack of development over the last 10 years. As yet, no new build BTR developments are underway. Buchanan Wharf is likely to be the first, but its viability is not proven, as it is a small part of a much larger development.
"Meeting the Gold Standard requirements in full is not economically viable for Block D, and it is unlikely to be economically viable for most residential and BTR schemes in Glasgow for the foreseeable future. This is due largely to relatively low rental values and high costs of construction."
In a statement championing the changes, Scott Hobbs Planning added: "The residential (BTR) development proposed at block D contains 50% dual aspect apartments, however, the quality of the outlook for these single aspect flats will be unsurpassed in the city centre, with upper floors, in particular, enjoying panoramic views across the city."
In all block D will now comprise 136 flats and 700sq/m of commercial space, joined by a further 12 flats on the upper floors of 280 George Street.
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