Kier named as Tier One contractor to hub West Scotland

Kier imageKier Construction Scotland has been appointed as a Tier One contractor to hub West Scotland’s supply chain.

A joint-venture organisation owned by both the public and private sectors, hub West Scotland delivers a range of public sector capital works projects throughout west central Scotland.

It works in partnership with 15 public bodies in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde area, including NHS Greater Glasgow & Clyde and six local authorities: East Dunbartonshire; West Dunbartonshire; East Renfrewshire; Renfrewshire; Inverclyde and Glasgow City councils, covering a population of around 1.2 million people.

The partnership designs and constructs a wide range of new community facilities, including schools, health and community centres and facilities for blue light organisations, whilst providing value for money to the public purse and the opportunity to work with local SMEs.

Kier Construction Scotland is already an equity stakeholder and Tier One contractor in hub South West Scotland and a Tier One contractor on hub North and hub East Central.

Iain Marley, chief executive of hub West Scotland, said: “Key supply chain members are a vital ingredient in the success of hub West Scotland where we work in a collaborative partnership to deliver quality, innovative and value for money solutions to our public sector partners.

“Kier Construction Scotland boasts a wealth of delivery experience, and we look forward to working with them as a partnering contractor on future projects, to develop a sustainable future within communities across west central Scotland.”

Brian McQuade, Kier Construction Scotland’s managing director, added: “We are delighted to be appointed as a Tier One contractor to hub West Scotland. We believe that Kier has a great deal to offer the partnership and we are looking forward to working closely with the hub West team and supporting local communities by creating employment and educational opportunities.”

Clark Contracts to reinstate Glasgow’s original Mackintosh Tea Rooms

digThe Willow Tea Rooms Trust has appointed Clark Contracts to deliver the final construction and fit out phase of the famous original Tea Rooms Building created by Charles Rennie Mackintosh in 1903.

In addition to reinstating the Tea Rooms, the refurbishment at Glasgow’s Sauchiehall Street will create an exhibition and visitor centre, learning and education suite, retail and conference facilities. It will become a focal point for cultural and heritage tourism in the city.

Clark Contracts’ Manufactured Joinery Division are recreating some of the original fitted furniture pieces that will feature in the refurbished Tea Rooms including the bespoke banquet seating in the front salon and gallery, the detailed seating in the billiard room and the inglenook seating at its original fireplace.

The Board of Trustees are supported by an Advisory Panel of Mackintosh experts who scrutinise every detail of the restoration to ensure each element of the work is in line with the original Mackintosh designs, conserving the unique heritage.

Celia Sinclair, chair of the Trustees, said: “The Trust are delighted to have Clark Contracts on site. Works are going very well. Clark Contracts are not only determined to complete this exciting and challenging project, made possible by the support of The Heritage Lottery Fund, for an opening in June 2018, but are totally committed to the fact that this is a unique, iconic Mackintosh treasure in our City of Glasgow.”

Gerry Cummins, director, Clark Contracts, said: “It is an honour to be involved in such a unique and important project for Glasgow. We are looking forward to working with The Willow Tea Rooms Trust, their Mackintosh experts and the design team to deliver this exciting restoration.”

Clark Contracts is working with design team members Simpson and Brown Architects, project managers and surveyors Doig and Smith, services engineers Rybka, interior design consultants Studioarc and structural engineers David Narro Associates.

The award of the contract will support the training and development of Clark Contracts apprentices and trainees in roles including joinery and site management. The project has already seen visits from local students from Glasgow Caledonian University and there will be events held throughout the duration of the project to promote heritage craft skills.

Plans submitted for housing-led regeneration of Govan’s Graving Docks

Govan Graving DocksProposals to build more than 700 homes at Govan’s Graving Docks have moved forward with the submission of a planning application by the developers.

ZM Architecture and New City Vision unveiled plans in March to bring the site back into use after 40 years of dereliction with the creation of 750 homes in a series of buildings ranging from four to 15 storeys in height.

Following a public consultation, plans for the area now include up to 800 homes, a hotel, shops, restaurants and office space.

The proposal extends the Clyde Walkway at an area currently closed to the public and there will be heritage centre telling the story of the docks.

Peter Richardson, director of ZM Architecture, which is developing the masterplan for the project, said: “It’s a real privilege to work on the development of one of the most historic and iconic sites on the River Clyde.

“The Graving Docks were once a thriving part of the Clydeside and our proposal builds on that heritage and will totally transform this into a great place to live, work and relax.

“We believe that our plans for the Graving Docks will not only play a key role in reinvigorating this part of Govan’s waterfront, they will be a catalyst for positive economic and social change through valuable long-term jobs and high quality and affordable housing.”

Developers could not give an exact figure for the number of homes to be built but the site is zoned for housing in the Glasgow City Development Plan for up to 800 homes.

At least 100 of the new properties will be affordable housing.

The multi-million pound development will create jobs and training opportunities for up to 1500 people over a construction period of up to 10 years.

New City Vision said a significant proportion of construction jobs – and later in hospitality and retail – will go to local people.

Harry O’Donnell, chairman of New City Vision, said: “The rejuvenation of the proposed public space will embrace the proud shipbuilding history of the Graving Docks. The new spaces will extend the Clyde walkway for walkers and cyclists and open up the riverside in Govan after being inaccessible to the public and the local community for more than four decades.

“The plans also feature a heritage centre that will tell the story of the iconic docks, which was a key part of Clydeside shipbuilding from the 1860s right up until the late 1980s.”

Key features of the Category A-listed site include three large “graving docks” – dry docks for repairing and maintaining ships.

The design proposes building adjacent to these unique shipbuilding features.

It is proposed that two out of the three docks will remain filled with water, with areas for moored houseboats and other leisure uses.

The third will be maintained as a dry dock to allow people to safely experience the dock floor.

Historic capstans and lampposts will be restored and retained and original chain and protective barrier rails will be re-installed.

The Quays will also provide moorings, pontoons and access to the Clyde via a new slip.

Cruden begins £9.3m revamp of former east end hotel

Councillor McLean (pictured far right) and the team behind the development

Councillor McLean (pictured far right) and the team behind the development

A multi million pound transformation of a historic Glasgow building into new east end homes with begins in earnest with the redevelopment of a former hotel in iconic Monteith Row close to Glasgow Green.

The street has an important place in Glasgow’s rich history and dates from 1891.

Now Thenue Housing is preserving the building by turning it into new flats and also building new ones in a project costing £9.3 million.

Councillor Kenny McLean, city convener for neighbourhoods, housing and public realm at Glasgow City Council, got the work underway on a visit to Monteith Row.

Forty nine new flats are being created with building work scheduled to be completed in 2019.

Monteith Row was once home to well-heeled Glaswegians in the 19th century.

One of its remaining buildings – the former Monteith Hotel which is named after a former Lord Provost – will form the centrepiece of the development.

Its new lease of life and additional flats is the latest housing boost from Thenue and is the third development of new homes the housing association has announced in the last nine months.

It brings to £23.6 million the amount of money Thenue is spending on giving people new homes in this location, in Bridgeton and in Castlemilk. The total number of homes being built is around 120. The development is being built by Cruden Building.

Charles Turner, chief executive of Thenue Housing, said: “This is an important step forward in bringing much-needed new homes to the east end.

“Monteith Row is an iconic Glasgow street and preserving a much-loved building by creating modern, energy-efficient new homes will be greatly welcomed by the community.

“We are grateful to Glasgow City Council and the Scottish Council for contributing to the cost of this significant project. Without them it simply would not have been possible.

“It is wonderful that a building with such a rich historical connection to the city is being given a new lease of life.”

Councillor McLean said: “It is great to see work beginning on these 49 new homes in this famous building on a historic Glasgow street. This will be an interesting and attractive development, located close to the city centre, and I’m sure will be enjoyed by the new residents when work is complete.

“The council is pleased to work with Thenue Housing Association, and all of our other partner housing bodies, to deliver high-quality new homes such as these across the city.”

Allan Callaghan, managing director of Cruden Building, added: “We are delighted to work with Thenue Housing to deliver this landmark development of much needed quality, affordable housing in Glasgow’s east end.

“This development will also breathe new life into a once-great city building, the Monteith Hotel, as we convert it into modern, energy efficient homes which will overlook Glasgow Green. During this development, we will be working with local suppliers and providing valuable training opportunities to the local community.”

Residents vow to fight on as Jordanhill campus housing development wins approval

Cala - Jordanhill 3Plans to deliver more than 400 homes on the University of Strathclyde’s former Jordanhill campus have gained planning permission, with residents already planning to continue their campaign against the development.

CALA Homes (West) submitted proposals in March to develop the 31-acre site in Glasgow, which was put up for sale in 2015 after Planning Permission in Principle was obtained by the University for a residential developer.

Councillors voted 12-2 in favour of the development ranging from one bedroom flats to detached family homes.

The developers said the proposals will “create a wide range of much needed, high quality homes” and maintained that half of the development will remain as greenspace.

However over 900 objections were made to Glasgow City Council amid concerns over a lack of social housing, the absence of amenities within the development, traffic management and the impact on local schools.

Cala - Jordanhill 1Jordanhill Community Council, which has led the rejections, insists it will continue to try to halt the plans.

The body has already launched legal action, with a judicial review petition being heard in the Court of Session last week, although the outcome is not yet known.

“We will continue to seek justice and look forward to the outcome of our judicial review petition,” said the council.

“We would consider it a breach of natural justice if any work was to commence on the campus site prior to a court verdict.”

Ken Robertson, a spokesman for the community council, said: “We simply cannot understand how the planning committee voted this through and ignored the objections of 900 residents and three local councillors.

“We cannot accept the way things have been handled.

“At a time when climate change is high on agenda, the loss of open space along with the destruction of protected mature trees is unacceptable.

“To make this decision while the outcome of the judicial review is still awaited makes things even worse.”

Cala - Jordanhill 2Mr Robertson added: “A much needed community centre would have provided shared spaces for nursery, pre-school education and after-school care.

“It would have integrated the existing community with the new one, which will be created within the campus.

“Instead there is a very real danger that CALA will create a gated village, remote from the rest of Jordanhill.”

Last month, CALA penned an open letter to residents describing how the planning application will protect and enhance greenspace at the site, retain the Category B-listed David Stow building, open playing fields to local schools and establish one of the city’s most desirable and well-designed residential developments.

After councillors voted to approve the development, managing director Jim McIntyre said: “We’re confident our plans will deliver a fantastic new residential development that will meet the demand for high quality housing in Glasgow.”

Student accommodation plan for former Glasgow print plant

Graeme Todd of DM Hall

Graeme Todd of DM Hall

The former John Watson & Company print works in Glasgow is to be redeveloped as student accommodation and office space following its sale to developers Watkin Jones.

The planned development at Kyle, Calgary and Stafford Streets, will comprise student accommodation of around 300 bedrooms, ancillary accommodation, amenity space and parking.

The 0.85-acre site became available as a result of the sale of John Watson & Company to Multi-Colour Corporation, which is head quartered in Ohio, USA, and its subsequent move to a new build Centre of Excellence in Clydebank.

John Watson OBE, former owner of the business, said: “We operated very successfully from Kyle Street since the early 1970s, so its sale represents the end of an era. On the other hand, it please me greatly that the site will be re-born as student accommodation serving what will be the next generation of educated business people in Glasgow and the rest of the country.”

Graeme Todd of DM Hall, who oversaw the sale, said: “The property was sold at a closing date with several offers generated by a marketing campaign which had the benefit of an existing planning consent for a student accommodation development.

“Whilst there is much talk and debate about continuing demand for student accommodation development, our marketing of Kyle Street generated considerable interest, particularly as the site had so much to commend it, being close to the city centre, the motorway and a short walking distance from major bus and rail links.

“Demolition of the old printing works is imminent and the development should be projected for completion in August 2019.”

Glasgow’s Citizens Theatre set for £19.4m ‘transformative’ redevelopment

Citizens Theatre GlasgowThe Citizens Theatre Company is to move out of its historic home in the Gorbals next summer for two years while the theatre undergoes a £19.4 million redevelopment.

The building, which is leased by Citizens Theatre Company from Glasgow City Council, needs to close to allow builders to move on-site to undertake the essential building works that will transform its Victorian theatre into a 21st century building fit for purpose.

The new building has been designed by architectural practice Bennetts Associates and the theatre will re-open to the public in autumn 2020.

During that period, plays, drama classes and staff, will be moved to a number of different venues including the Tramway and Scotland Street Museum.

In addition, the theatre’s production facilities will move across the road from the theatre into the former Skills Academy building, which is owned by City Building/Glasgow City Council, in Laurieston.

Dominic Hill, artistic director of the Citizens Theatre, said: “The Citizens Theatre building is about to embark on the biggest changes to its physical structure in its 139 year history. This latest stage in our £19.4m redevelopment project presents an exciting opportunity for a number of key landmark cultural organisations to work together in Glasgow. Our shared history of innovation and creativity makes it a great opportunity to collaborate with them.

“We hope our audiences and participants will find our offer thrilling and appealing, as they follow us on our journey, as we temporarily move out of the theatre and present an exciting programme of work from different venues across the city.”

Councillor David McDonald, depute leader of Glasgow City Council and chair of Glasgow Life, added: “We’re delighted to be able to support the transformation of one of Scotland’s iconic cultural institutions.

“The Citizens Theatre is rooted in the local community and it is absolutely fitting that while the venue is being refurbished, its ambitious programme of live theatre, creativity and learning, will continue across our venues, inspiring audiences from near and far.”

The theatre recently launched its ‘We Are Citizens’ public fundraising campaign which will inspire, engage, and encourage others to help raise £1.6 million for the building redevelopment.

New community planned at former Scottish Power site

Riverside @ CathcartBarratt Homes has started work to deliver a new community on the site of the former Scottish Power headquarters in Cathcart, Glasgow.

The Riverside @ Cathcart development is set to include apartments, homes and expansive green spaces.

As part of the overall masterplan for the site the builder has retained many of the key features; the existing feature walls will be relocated and rebuilt within the site, and the original sundial will form part of a feature entrance square.

Estelle Sykes, sales director, Barratt West Developments, said: “The re-development of the former Scottish Power headquarters will see us rid the site of expanses of surface car parking, while being careful to retain a lot of the original trees. We will make some serious public space improvements and we will be bringing a selection of quality homes to the area.

“One of the key design elements of the new site will be a ‘western boulevard’ that will be lined with newly planted trees and the framed by the three storey townhouses – we expect this to be a very popular area of The Riverside @ Cathcart.

“The homes that sit alongside Cathcart House will have some spectacular views across Glasgow, as well as private gardens to enjoy. There will also be some detached homes that sit along the border of White Cart Water, these will be perfect for househunters that would like to wake up to the soothing noise of the river.”

Council agrees £500,000 funding award for Govanhill Baths

Govanhill Baths FoyerGlasgow City Council has agreed a £500,000 funding award that will support plans to bring back swimming to the former Govanhill Baths.

The funding awarded to Govanhill Baths Community Trust will go towards a £6.68 million plan that aims to reopen the former ladies and learner pools at the facility as part of a wider package of work.

It is hoped the unanimous decision by the council’s city administration committee will also lead to the other funding bodies working with Govanhill Baths Community Trust to provide financial backing for the project.

If the baths trust achieves its £6.68m target its will be able to complete Phase 1B of the restoration plan. As well as opening the two smaller pools at the baths, the plan involves work to ensure the building itself is wind and watertight and the opening of other facilities such as a Turkish spa, a gymnasium, a community kitchen and an events and arts space.  The bid to re-open the main swimming pool remains a longer term goal.

Councillor Kenny McLean, city convener for neighbourhoods, housing and public realm, said: “A huge amount of progress has been made with the business case for Govanhill Baths as a long term project. Govanhill Baths Community Trust is now able to put forward a far more robust proposal that points towards a sustainable future for the baths.

“On this basis I am very pleased that our proposal to provide the trust with significant funding for the next phase of their project has been agreed.  I am very hopeful this funding will encourage the other funders the trust has been working with to commit fully to backing Govanhill Baths.

“Achieving the overall funding target will help the trust secure the fabric of the building and open up a wide range of facilities at the baths, including two of the smaller pools. This is sure to enhance the use of the facility and provide a great boost to the health and well-being of the wider Govanhill community.”

The fundraising effort for the baths trust has recently been boosted by a community shares issues, which has already brought in £70,000. Decisions on funding bids to the Regeneration Capital Grant Fund and the Heritage Lottery Fund are due in March next year and, if positive, these could net Govanhill Baths Community Trust a total of £2.4m. Smaller funding bids have also have been lodged with eight other funding organisations.

Fatima Uygun, trust manager of Govanhill Baths Community Trust, said: “We are delighted that the city administration committee has decided to fund our project. This is vital to the completion of the project and we are very grateful to the council and city government for their continued support.

“The restoration of the facilities in Govanhill is crucial to our community, the city government have promised to ‘let good things happen’ and they are certainly putting their money where their mouth is.”

If the funding target is achieved, it is hoped that work on Phase 1B of the restoration project could begin in May 2019 ahead of opening in July 2021.

Glasgow takes steps to ‘future-proof’ city’s SMEs

Circular Glasgow Press Release Nov 16A recruitment campaign designed to facilitate 50 Glasgow-based businesses to prepare for the future has been launched today by Circular Glasgow.

Hosted by Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, Circular Glasgow will connect with companies across a number of sectors, including construction, helping them to open up new revenue streams, increase competitive advantage and realise financial savings using a range of practical tools.

The team aims to complete 50 Circle Assessments by the end of 2018 using an online tool created by Circle Economy, global market leaders based in the Netherland’s. The initiative will look at different ways businesses can innovate and incorporate new design and technology, thinking through the adoption of new business models, including circular economy strategies.

A circular economy is one in which every product is created with the intent of extending its life span – a direct challenge to the ‘take, make, dispose’ mentality.

Alison McRae, senior director of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: “We are delighted to be at the implementation stage of Circular Glasgow where we can start to get more businesses across the city involved to help them innovate and future-proof their business.

“Glasgow’s ambition is to position itself as a leading circular city. With Circular Glasgow’s programme of practical engagement tools, and with the ongoing support of Zero Waste Scotland, we aim to inspire organisations to embrace new business models helping them to design for the future.”

Circular Glasgow complements Zero Waste Scotland’s and the Scottish Government’s nationwide support for SMEs to develop circular economy business ideas, including its £18 million Circular Economy Investment Fund and Circular Economy Business Support Service. Both are supported by the European Regional Development Fund through the £73m Resource Efficiency Circular Economy Accelerator Programme.

Iain Gulland, Zero Waste Scotland’s chief executive, said: “Circular Glasgow is an innovative approach to maximise circular opportunities on a large scale. This is about connecting businesses in Glasgow across sectors to find opportunities in materials once thought of as waste. Simply put, for businesses this can mean turning a cost into a possible revenue stream.

“Working together in innovative ways will set the foundations for a future where economic buoyancy is achieved through inclusive, sustainable growth. I’m delighted Glasgow is set to become a front-runner in these efforts and look forward to what’s to come.”

Whether an organisation has already started to implement circular strategies, or has just begun its transformation, the online Circle Assessments create a simple way to diagnose how current practices match up to circular objectives, while identifying new opportunities, at no cost to the business.

The team will also be hosting Circle Workshops across the year, focusing on specific industry sectors.

Interested businesses are invited to attend a Circular Glasgow information event on Wednesday December 6 to understand how they could benefit directly.  Register at