RUNDOWN, overgrown open space near central Glasgow can be turned into a sustainability hub and park, planners have agreed.
City officials have given the go-ahead for vacant land at Civic Street, just north of the M8 motorway, to be used as an events space with workshops.
A partnership between community interest company Agile City and landscape architects ERZ aims to re-activate the site in conjunction with existing activity at Civic House, pursuing themes of travel, energy, food, making and re-use.
— Re-purposing four shipping containers for use by Glasgow Tool Library, Bike For Good, as community project space and as a storage facility.
— Yard space for events and workshops and a polytunnel for urban food production.
— New planting, pathways and signage to improve visibility, access and create a more welcoming environment.
The project ties in with wider ambitions for active travel as part of Connecting Woodside as it is a key gateway site for the Forth and Clyde Canal and is beside the new cycle route at Garscube Road.
A document explaining the scheme states: “The site will create a welcoming sense of arrival to the neighbourhood and provide a green ‘pause’ space within the city [with] seating, platforms, infrastructure, stages that can help facilitate community groups to deliver events, facilitate active travel, skateboarding, socialising and a green lunch spot.
“Speirs Locks is home to some of Scotland’s leading cultural organisations. This site will create a ‘cultural commons’ for the area that invites a range of activity from local organisations including — music, talks, outdoor cinema, performance, workshops, food events and workshops.”
The statement continues: “The wider area around the site is currently home to a wide range of cultural, educational and industrial organisations that give a rich and diverse character. This dynamic community means that there is a local audience for the cultural and social aspects of the project.
“There are a large number of residential and mixed use developments planned or under construction to the north of the site. This means that in the near future there will be many more local residents who will be passing through who also may want to interact with the programmes of activity proposed, further increasing the reach of any sustainable message.
“It is proposed that the project will develop incrementally over a number of years to allow it to adapt to changing dynamics in the local area and to influence an evolving range of issues and topics.
“This incremental development will make the best use of limited funds allowing the project to be resilient to future change whilst making the greatest local impact.
“The yard will be a centre of action research. This is the process of performing research through the act of doing or making. The physical spaces created in the yard will provide the infrastructure required to undertake any research activities on locally important issues.”
The applicants also state: “This phase is a meanwhile-use project and will last no longer than five years. During this period we will develop a longer-term strategy, deliver a series of engagement events and raise funds for more permanent building works.”