Largest BTR project in scotland
Central Quay is a fascinating and intriguing city-centre project that prompts considerations of heritage, scale, proportion, morphology and connected permeability as a microcosm of Glasgow’s future direction for riverside regeneration.
The site is located to the South West of Glasgow City Centre on a strip of derelict land bounded by Anderston Quay and the River Clyde to the South. It is the bifurcation imposed by Clydeside Expressway to the North of the site, and the shadow of the Kingston Bridge to the East that are the location’s most complex contextual issues. This linear zone of land bounded by the M8 on one side and the SEC on the other are somewhat disconnected from the city by the infrastructure. Our initial concepts focused on block orientated, street-edge structures that encouraged the connections and public permeability needed to stitch the site back into a such a multi-layered context.
In terms of established patterns, the site is outside the designated City Centre zone but is well served by both public transport and pedestrian connectivity via the walkway over the M8, Expressway and the riverfront walk from Broomielaw to Lancefield Quay. The Fastlink station located immediately to the South East of the site further improves the connectivity to central Glasgow and its surrounds.
Our design concept incorporated several key aspirations. There is an obligation to enhancing the city morphology and the image of the River Clyde corridor, and the site location is pivotal in promoting this.
The elevated Kingston Bridge approach from the south-west is considered differently now from the early 70s when it’s impact on the city’s infrastructure was viewed under different criteria. Nowadays, our aspiration is to downplay the severance it creates but without losing the accessibility it offers. Our design sought to provide an urban gateway context to help lessen the visual impact on the local environment.
We tested our ideas with a series of conceptual diagrams illustrating the principles of our site response and conveying ideas about the development of the proposed massing for the scheme.
- The site footprint is extruded creating a large urban block.
- The urban block is shaped; the site massing responding to the adjacent city context, environmental considerations and the River Clyde frontage.
- The massing of the residential blocks are tested; routes, access, active frontages, adjacencies and the residential building forms emerge.
- The massing is refined and tested further based on the principles established in the Masterplan.
Following review of ratio and proportion a strong gateway tower to the south-east is proposed that addresses the River Clyde and the adjacent site proposals, while reduced massing on the South West also improves daylight and amenity to the central landscape courtyard and the rooftop terraces.
To the North the massing and urban edge are reviewed and tested against the surrounding context. The residential block is mirrored to create an active corner and stepped massing that acknowledges the adjacent proposals.
The masterplan scheme was granted a PPiP in 2017, comprising of 34,000sqm office space, hotel, retail and around 450 residential units for private sale/PRS tenure. Car parking across the site was integrated within the proposals to maximise the public realm and landscape courtyards creating an effectively car free, highly permeable urban context.
Westrock appointed us to develop the residential element located to the south of the site, adjacent to the river for PRS operator Platform_. The scheme consists of 498 apartments of varying sizes accommodated in 4 blocks with a central landscape courtyard. It includes a 20-storey tower located on the highly prominent south-east corner. The resident facilities include lounges, games rooms, gym, cycle club & café, roof terraces, and a co-working commercial area with café.
The design has been developed for PRS however future flexibility has been incorporated to allow it to return to private residential should this be required. Apartment types have been standardised to align with the operator’s requirements with the use of bathroom pods throughout. The external materials are high quality brick and concrete which reflect the heritage of the site and adjacent context.