A MAJOR programme of public realm improvements is planned for a street in Glasgow’s International Financial Services District (IFSD) after it emerged investors are being put off by its poor condition.
It’s hoped work will start in the autumn on at least £1million worth of improvements at Cadogan Street including resurfacing of the footway with high quality stone, new granite kerbs, seating at appropriate locations along the street, “low-level greening solutions” and dropped kerbs. A section of footway in Wellington Street up to Waterloo Street is also part of the proposal.
Redundant street objects will be removed and there will be an integrated approach to the design and siting of required street furniture.
A report to city councillors states: “The aspiration to invest resources in Cadogan Street has evolved as a consequence of a number of factors. Some of these can be traced back to the 2008 economic crisis and the detrimental effect on the demand for office space at this location, which resulted in limited investor confidence in the street.
“Despite some regeneration activity which has led to the refurbishment of vacant office buildings and new developments on the ground in recent years, property investors have reported how the current poor conditions of the public realm in Cadogan Street are significantly limiting the potential for further investment. This is affecting the regeneration of the street and the surrounding area.
“The provision of quality public realm at this location will create an improved, high quality, well-functioning environment to complement the established identity and world-class reputation of the IFSD as a business centre while supporting investments on the street.
“The improvements to the physical environment will enhance the connectivity through the existing network of streets and maximise accessibility and also encourage active travel opportunities for pedestrians along Cadogan Street.
“It is anticipated that the proposal will act as a catalyst for sustainable economic growth, by creating the conditions to attract inward investment which will enable future job creation.
“This will contribute to make Cadogan Street economically resilient for businesses to locate here and thrive. The proposed investment is also expected to increase the marketability of the council-owned Anderston Centre on the western side of the street.
“The proposed public realm intervention is developed collaboratively in consultation with local investors. Its emphasis is on a design-led approach to place-making, with the objective of making, Cadogan Street ;people-friendly;, more attractive, greener, sustainable and more economically competitive and accessible for all.”
City officials are proposing that the money comes from a fund which developers have to contribute to under city planning policy.
The proposal is supported by the private sector — a statement submitted to the council confirmed a willingness, in principle, among a number of the land/building owners along the proposed route to contribute, via the procurement and/or possible maintenance of street infrastructure.
They added: “We believe this public and private sector partnership approach will maximise the much-needed benefit and outputs from that joint investment.”
Launched in 2001 by Glasgow City Council and Scottish Enterprise, the award- winning IFSD was originally the catalyst for regenerating the Broomielaw and the west city centre area. Today the district has expanded to cover a much wider area of Glasgow City Centre and has evolved to become the “brand” for Glasgow’s financial and business services community.