Developer unveils £10m plans to turn Finnieston offices into green housing

A developer focused on transforming city-centre brownfield sites into “thriving” housing developments has submitted £10 million plans to turn a property in Glasgow’s Finnieston into highly sustainable homes.

Nevis Properties is behind the proposal for 131 Minerva Street – a former brass foundry currently used as offices, and billed as pioneering in terms of environmentally friendly residential developments.

It said sustainability and residents’ physical and mental wellbeing are “at the heart of” architect Haus Collective’s designs for a mixture of 64 one-, two- and three-bedroom flats – all of which will feature their own private balcony.

An economic impact assessment carried out on behalf of Nevis Properties estimated that the development could be worth around £2m a year to the city’s economy, and more than £2.6m to the regional construction industry. Plans for the development were submitted to Glasgow City Council on October 19.

It has been estimated that the development on Minerva Street could boost the city's economy by around £2m a year. Picture: contributed.

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Nevis Properties stressed that it has gone beyond the sustainability requirements set out in Glasgow’s City Development Plan, adopting a low-carbon focus with an emphasis on energy-efficient materials and green technologies.

This includes a high efficiency centralised combined heat and power system, which harnesses reclaimed heat to reduce energy use, as well as supplementing power to six electrical vehicle (EV) chargers. The proposed Minerva Street development also features a rooftop photovoltaic solar panel array to provide free clean energy to offset conventional power consumption in the building.

Haus has developed three separate amenity gardens including a seventh-floor rooftop residents’ terrace with views across the southside of Glasgow. All three amenity decks have been designed to help build a “sense of community” – with an outdoor exercise space on one and an area for communal dining on another.

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The site, right next to Exhibition Centre train station, was chosen due to its strong transport connectivity, which includes multiple bus links and a walkable commute to the city centre. The development has been designed with reduced car parking as a consequence to encourage sustainable living.

Nevis Properties has chosen for the site to have six active EV charging stations – almost 30 per cent of total spaces. The other spaces will be EV-ready, with ducting installed so charging points can be added if required.

Regeneration

The firm said a selection of properties at Minerva Way will be priced at a level to cater for first-time buyers, as well as attracting young professionals generally.

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The developer added that it is focused on regenerating brownfield sites to help to address Glasgow’s housing shortage, and director Marc Taylor believes that by providing attractive accommodation in and around the city centre, there will be less need for development on finite greenbelt land.

He said Glasgow needs the creation of “quality housing in prime locations, which enhances the urban fabric of the city and attracts the very best talent”.

Additionally, he flagged how Finnieston has both a “distinct” lack of choice for quality new-build accommodation and extremely high demand for second-hand properties.

“As Glasgow becomes ever more popular with larger businesses, there is a growing need to meet the surging demand for premium living accommodation at a price point which fits the needs of buyers and renters. That’s why we want to develop a property which will not only develop a real community, but also become the gold standard for sustainable developments in future.”

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