Student accommodation bid for Sauchiehall Street M&S rejected

Student accommodation bid for Sauchiehall Street M&S rejected

Councillors have rejected plans to redevelop the former Marks & Spencer store in Glasgow’s Sauchiehall Street to provide student accommodation.

Student housing developer Fusion Students had lodged £76m proposals to deliver rooms for 634 residents at the prominent city centre site.

An arcade was also proposed as part of the plans, complete with commercial units to create a new and vibrant environment that would reinstate a historic link between Sauchiehall Street and Renfrew Street.

Planning officials were in favour of the development, stating in their report: “If implemented, the proposal will deliver economic development benefits within the city centre through investment in the built fabric, increased population, and the creation of employment opportunities.

“This would also assist in delivering alternative uses in the Sauchiehall Street area –- being a strategic priority to ensure the vitality of the city centre.

Student accommodation bid for Sauchiehall Street M&S rejected

“The proposed use is appropriate to the city centre environment and will encourage footfall and activity within the neighbourhood.

“The proposed scheme would deliver an additional 633 rooms to the Glasgow student accommodation offer. Given the demand for accommodation, it will not lead to an over-supply, but would rather assist in addressing the crucial shortfall issues within the student accommodation market.”

However, councillors narrowly voted against the application. The committee voted 5:5, with the chair making their casting vote against.

Among the reasons given by the councillors who opposed were the development’s impact on the conservation area, with particular regard to views, a lack of mixed tenure accommodation and an over-concentration of student accommodation in the local area.

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