Glasgow’s second tallest building could be a student tower block

A proposal to build a 36-story student tower block on the site of a former tax office in Glasgow has been submitted to the city council. The project, named The Ard, would be the second tallest building in Glasgow, after the 127-meter-high Stobhill Hospital.

A new landmark for Glasgow

The Ard would be located on India Street at Charing Cross, where Portcullis House currently stands. Portcullis House was built in the 1970s and later became home to HM Revenue and Customs. The developers, Watkin Jones Group, purchased the property in August 2020 and plan to demolish it to make way for the new structure.

The Ard would have 825 units of build-to-rent and co-living accommodation, as well as shops, a cafe and a co-working space. Co-living is a community-based housing model with shared communal areas, amenities and even meals. The developers claim that there is a huge demand in Glasgow for this model, which offers long-term security of tenure, combined with the flexibility of renting.

The tower block would also have a distinctive design, with a curved facade and a crown-like top. The developers say that the building would create a new landmark for Glasgow and enhance the city’s skyline.

A public consultation process

The proposal is currently undergoing a public consultation process, which started on December 6 and will last for at least 12 weeks. Due to the pandemic, the consultation is being held online, via the project website. The public can view the details of the proposal and provide feedback between 15:00 and 20:00.

Any suggestions for changes during the public consultation will be included in a report accompanying future applications. The developers hope to submit a planning application to Glasgow City Council by early 2024. If approved, the development could be completed by 2026.

A mixed reaction from the public

The proposal has received a mixed reaction from the public, with some praising the project for its innovation and sustainability, and others criticizing it for its height and impact on the surrounding area. Some of the comments posted on the project website are:

Glasgow’s second tallest building could be a student tower block

  • “I think this is a great idea. Glasgow needs more affordable and modern housing options for young people and professionals. Co-living is the future of urban living and I would love to live in a place like this.”
  • “This is a terrible idea. Glasgow does not need another skyscraper that will block the views and sunlight of the existing buildings. This will ruin the character and heritage of Charing Cross and create more traffic and noise problems.”
  • “I am not opposed to the concept of co-living, but I think this is the wrong location for it. This area is already congested and overcrowded with students and office workers. Why not build it somewhere else, like the East End or the South Side?”
  • “I am impressed by the design and the features of this building. It looks very futuristic and elegant. I think it will add to the attractiveness and diversity of Glasgow’s skyline and attract more visitors and investors to the city.”posal
By Ishan Crawford

Prior to the position, Ishan was senior vice president, strategy & development for Cumbernauld-media Company since April 2013. He joined the Company in 2004 and has served in several corporate developments, business development and strategic planning roles for three chief executives. During that time, he helped transform the Company from a traditional U.S. media conglomerate into a global digital subscription service, unified by the journalism and brand of Cumbernauld-media.

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