Building on the Clyde set to turn the tide

Ongoing projects along Glasgow’s riverside could have major implications for the city’s financial district, writes Kirsty McLuckie.

Ongoing projects along Glasgow’s riverside could have major implications for the city’s financial district, writes Kirsty McLuckie

New projects breaking ground along Glasgow’s Clyde waterfront look set to rejuvenate an overlooked part of Scotland’s biggest city and could shift the whole focus of its financial district.

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Work began this month at the Atlantic Square development, inset, where HM Revenue and Customs has agreed to lease the ten-storey Building 1 at Atlantic Square, Argyle Street, for a minimum of 20 years. HMRC will be taking an estimated 187,205sq ft of office space, eventually accommodating approximately 2,700 employees by 2021.

But this is just one of the city’s most significant current developments happening along the Clyde, particularly the stretch between the city’s core and west, and the area surrounding Central Station.

Meanwhile, on the south of the river, construction workers are laying the foundations for Buchanan Wharf, a massive mixed-use development comprising one million sq ft of office space, 350 residential units and a 150-bed hotel.

At its centre, Drum Property Group is developing a 470,000sq ft office campus for Barclays Bank, pictured right, which will bring 2,500 new employees to the waterfront site when the first phase opens in autumn next year. The deal is the largest recorded in the UK regions in the past ten years.

At Pacific Quay, the former site of the Glasgow Garden Festival is the target of
£30 million proposals for a mixed-use site bringing together homes and offices with restaurants and bars – as well as a new £10m urban whisky distillery, bottling plant and visitor centre operated by Douglas Laing and Co.

Alistair Reid of JLL says: “The whole area has been overlooked which is why there is such potential for development, but old riverfront sites which would have been warehousing are now cleared.

“You just don’t have that potential around Bothwell or St Vincent Street, but down in the Broomielaw there is space for big scale developments.

“The Barclays and HMRC deals are driving a real resurgence but they are just the headlines. Number one and number three Atlantic Quay, for example, have been leased by the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Services and the DWP.”

Refurbished buildings at four and six at Atlantic Quay have also been sold by JLL.

Reid adds: “We think Glasgow’s central business district will take a sizeable shift southwards as a result of these developments.”

This article appeared in the Spring 2019 edition of Vision. A digital version can be found here.