PLANNERS are being asked to approve a three-storey office building made from adapted shipping containers beside the canal at Port Dundas in Glasgow.
Scottish Canals have applied to develop the Enterprise Wharf facility which would offer affordable commercial office space particularly for social enterprises and third sector businesses.
An area of land at Mid Wharf Street would be cleared for the building which is designed to be fully accessible with shared facilities on every level so that it can operate as a community of co-workers.
A separate planning application was recently submitted for public realm improvements along the wharfside linking the new communities under construction at Dundashill and Sighthill.
Documents submitted with the planning application state that the project — funded through a Scottish Government regeneration grant — aims to provide:
— Low cost business start-up space in partnership with two local academic organisations
— New facilities for the existing and growing communities of Sighthill to tie in with the existing business and social enterprises at Port Dundas and the numerous creative businesses along the canal corridor.
— Opportunities for the Sighthill and Dundashill communities to get access to training, employment and leisure facilities
Provision would be made for the ground floor accommodation facing the green area with the skow boat to be used by a more public-facing tenant or possibly a cafe.
A design statement with the application states: “The wharf was originally much wider to accommodate trains and fixed cranes.
“In recent years the boundaries of leases at 101 and 112 Mid Wharf Street, have encroached across the majority of the wharf’s width and a tall pre-cast concrete panel boundary wall built.
“We propose to remove the existing concrete wall and set the new building nine metres back from the canal edge, considerably more than the 3.5 metre width required by [active travel promoters] Sustrans for pedestrians and cyclists.
“This will allow space to eventually extend a wide public realm the full length of this canal bank as sites become developed in future years, allowing depth for the building and its car parking whilst safeguarding a zone along Mid Wharf Street for future development –- an important objective to enable this urban block to eventually have activity on more edges.”
It continues: “The new building marks the terminus of Payne Street where it connects with the [proposed] improved pedestrian and cycle route along the canal. The end unit on the top floor is fixed in a cranked position, acting like a sentinel.”
The proposal is pending assessment by Glasgow City planners.