Representatives from AS Homes and Southside Housing Association (SHA) were kind enough to attend the last Strathbungo Society committee meeting, and elaborate on their plans for the site at Pollokshaws Road and Nithsdale Drive.
Some points to note:
- In response to concerns raised, the height at the corner has been dropped from eight storeys to seven, though possibly by extending the seven stories a little further along Pollokshaws Road (see sketches). At this end it will then drop to 5 storeys to match the roof line of the next building. On Nithsdale Drive it will drop to 4 storeys near the Mission Hall. They intend to provide “sunlight analysis” diagrams with their planning application, which may help decide if this sufficiently allays fears of neighbours, especially those on the other side of Nithsdale Drive. While they justify the height based on examples of other tall corner buildings in the neighbourhood, we did note that generally those buildings do not cast shadows over neighbouring residents.
- There will be no on-site car parking, in line with Council expectations. SHA state that car uptake amongst their tenants on other developments is actually very low, even where parking has been provided. The parking (nose-in) on Nithsdale Drive will be retained, and they may provide electric charging points on some of these bays. Secure cycle storage wil open straight out onto Pollokshaws Road.
- All services are contained within the footprint of the building (bin-stores etc.)
- The building will be in a mostly red brick finish, to reflect the local red sandstone tenements.
- They expect it to be a “gas free” development, and are looking at alternative heating options, and solar panels on the roof.
- The planning application will be lodged with the council in about two weeks from now, and there will then be the usual statutory period if you wish to object or raise concerns. So watch the Council planning portal, and if we hear, we will link to it here.
- SHA and AS Homes are not involved in the other Arnold Clark future development further along Nithsdale Drive (the old servicing depot).
It is clear that we need to get Strathbungo off gas heating sooner rather than later, but onto what? Improving energy efficiency and insulation comes first, but we need to replace the boilers. One option is air source heat pumps where each property has their own independent system. Another is a district heating system where hot water is delivered directly to properties rather than gas. District heating needs a heat source, Central Glasgow will get a network drawing heat from the Clyde, parts of Southside might be able to run a network off the White Cart, and in some areas (regrettably probably not ours) minewater heat can be used. Strathbungo does not have an obvious heat source but there are still options.
Ground Source Heat Pumps which draw energy from under the ground (1.5-250m) can work better than Air Source Heat Pumps as underground is at a pretty constant temperature year round. They can use pipes laid in trenches if you have lots of space (we do not) or boreholes otherwise. However, the cost of drilling a borehole can be high, partly due to the cost of bringing in the equipment. Drilling lots of boreholes in one go is much cheaper per borehole than drilling them one off. Therefore a network of boreholes in Strathbungo’s back lanes might supply the needs of Strathbungo’s heating.
There are other advantages: such heat pumps can be run in reverse to provide cooling. While Glasgow has historically not had much need of cooling, we don’t live in that world any more. Heatwaves can kill large numbers of people. Consequently ensuring that at least some properties have cooling is an essential matter of life and death as well as increased comfort. We can invite neighbours round to lie next to cold radiators and wait for the weather to turn, as it surely will. Running the pumps in reverse also helps recharge the boreholes, increasing their capacity and efficiency in the winter.
One of the key constraints is the rate at which the ground cooled by the boreholes warms up again as heat moves in from the centre of the earth and surrounding ground. Draw energy out too fast and the ground will slowly cool over the years and the system become less efficient. Charging the boreholes in the summer from cooling radiators/solar thermal panels etc. can enable more homes to be heated off the same borehole network.
The main difficulty is likely to be organisational and financial rather than technical as there is a significant capital cost, complexities around running costs, title deeds etc. and it would only work financially if enough households made a firm commitment.
Kensa has a video of how ground source district heating systems can work.
Strathbungo Eco Group and Loco Home Retrofit are talking to one manufacturer about the possibility of a Bungo Borehole Network. We hope that developing this idea and assessing feasibility can form part of future back lane funding proposals. Loco Home Retrofit will also apply to the new Heat Networks Development Fund to develop this idea. We are looking for people to help manage this project, do get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org
Details of the first suggestions for the fate of Arnold Clark’s maintenance site on Nithsdale Drive have appeared.
Arnold Clark are working with Page\Park Architects, and have opened a consultation on their initial proposals. You can see the full details on the Page\Park website.
There is a survey you can complete, and Zoom consultations on 30th March and 27th April.
The Arnold Clark showroom has been a prominent feature in Strathbungo for a century, sitting on the corner of Pollokshaws Road and Nithsdale Drive. It was built as The Queens Garage in the 1920s, and it has operated as a motor showroom ever since. Although the building looks a modern replacement, it is actually the original building with a new fascia.
However the showroom has now closed, and the land earmarked for housing. Today the first proposal for the site has been released by South Side Housing Association and Keppie Design, and they are looking for your comments. Note that while this is just an initial proposal, they hope to lodge their planning application in March or April.
You have a brief opportunity to discuss at this stage. Feel free to discuss on the Keppie Design web site, on here, on social media, or email email@example.com if you would rather the Society reflect your views anonymously.
The consultation dates are as follows:
- 24th February 2022 – 17th March 2022 (21 days): Public consultation period, with website available throughout.
- 3rd March 2022: A ‘live’ and interactive/two-way consultation event between 3pm – 6pm (3 hours), hosted as a ‘chat box’ function on the website.
- 17th March 2022: Final date for submitting comments via contact details on the website.
Their sketch above is based off Google Streetview, so here is a more realistic rendition of what is to come, and what it replaces.
Artist’s rendition, superimposed on Google Streetview
The Queens Garage
The Arnold Clark showroom
There’s a proposal gone in for the other part of Arnold Clarks on Nithsdale Drive today, beside the railway line. Not much detail:
You might have noticed the consultation on the neighbouring Langside, Battlefield, Mount Florida, King’s Park & Toryglen Liveable Neighbourhoods. This year it is likely to be the turn of Strathbungo and Shawlands to be consulted in this way as the Glasgow City Council works its way across the city. This is a key opportunity to tell the council what the current problems are and what our hopes and dreams for the future of Strathbungo and the surrounding area are.
If we submit our best ideas, some of them might get funded and there is also the possibility that this consultation could lead to a Local Place Plan. This would give the agreed hopes and dreams of residents the full force of planning law and so bring them about through future developments.
While this consultation is still unconfirmed and months away, the time to get thinking is now. What do you want fixed? What do you want to change? What do you want to keep? How can we build an even better Strathbungo?
With gas prices hitting £4 a therm and the price cap at 70p a therm you might be wondering how you can improve the insulation of your home in Strathbungo. Loco Home Retrofit CIC is a new local community benefit co-op who are trying to help communities insulate.
Their launch event is at 19:30 on Wednesday 1st December https://bit.ly/loco_launch
The Strathbungo Eco Group is excited about working with Loco Home Retrofit to achieve transformative improvements in insulation and energy in Strathbungo while preserving and maintaining our wonderful architecture.
Disclaimer: In their formative stages Loco Home Retrofit have helped Strathbungo Eco Group with information events and informal advice. Various Eco Group members have benefited from professional advice (sometimes at a discount). Tom Nockolds, a Director of Loco Home Retrofit, is also a Strathbungo Eco Group and Strathbungo Society Committee member.
Langside Halls Trust, working with funding Glasgow-based Hoskins Architects and culture & heritage consultants, Jura Consultants, have develop proposals for Langside Halls as an inclusive and sustainable venue for the Southside. Working with partners Glad Café, Southside Fringe, Southside Film Festival and others, the Trust want to create a regular cultural and social programme at the Halls, use them as a platform for Southside organisations and continue their traditional role as an affordable community-venue-for-hire.
Proposed improvements to the Halls would see them become fully accessible, with greater flexibility and more useful spaces as well as creating a new welcoming entrance space and new meeting spaces to accommodate all user groups – and to allow Langside Halls to fulfil its full potential as an important community and cultural hub.
Kevin Kane, Chair of Langside Halls Trust said:
The feasibility study proposals seek to breathe new life into Langside Halls and make them a fully accessible and attractive venue for communities across the South Side. The Trust wants to share the proposals with the wider community and to hear what folks and local organisations think of them – as well as what would make them use the Halls more.
The proposals can be viewed at the Langside Halls Trust’s website at where you will also find a community questionnaire where you can have you say on what is proposed. The community engagement runs until this Sunday, 28th February.
On 27th May Glasgow City Council applied for planning permission to itself for a new car park, road and footpath as part of the Transforming Pollok Country Park Project (see here for planning papers) and in anticipation of higher visitor numbers to the Burrell once the refurbishment/expansion is complete.
Key: blue = existing road upgraded; black = new road; brown = new footpath; light blue – existing footpath upgraded to disability standards. All illustrations courtesy of GCC Planning Portal.
The application form is not entirely clear but planning consent appears to being applied for:
- a new car park for 277 vehicles on the existing unused Nether Pollok blaes pitch by Hagg’s Road
- widening of the Hagg’s Road exit to form an entrance/exit
- creation of a new road to the Burrell car park and
- installation of various car barriers to limit vehicular access elsewhere in the Park.
The application is open for comment until 6th July and you can do so on the online planning portal above or at end of this blog.
The declared purpose of the application is to reduce the circulation of traffic in Pollok Country Park. It is part of a wider active travel plan accompanying the re-development of the Burrell. The Application contains a report of Glasgow City Council’s engagement with stakeholders that took place in 2019. Since then, as a result of Covid-19, the world and Pollok Country Park have changed beyond recognition.
More specifically the closure of Pollok Park to vehicles during the lockdown and the large numbers of people accessing the park by foot or by bike has transformed ideas of what might be possible. The proposals now look very dated and it is regrettable that Glasgow City Council has not re-considered them before submitting the planning application.
If interested but unable to go to the drop-in you can access the online consultation here
The proposed route extends the current South West City Way from the Shields Rd/St Andrew’s Drive junction along St Andrew’s Drive to Pollok Park.
The proposed route bypasses the main centres of population in East Pollokshields and Strathbungo. Were it instead to continue up Shields Rd to Nithsdale Rd, then on to Terregles Ave joining St Andrew’s Drive after Maxwell Park, it would be almost the same distance and much more helpful to any local resident wanting to use a dedicated cycle lane to get to Pollok Park or into the city centre by the South West Cycle route. The Strathbungo Society could then work on the missing link between the Darnley/Nithsdale and Shields/Nithsdale junctions!
What do people think?
For those of you not lucky enough to get a shiny paper copy through your door, the latest Strathbungo Newsletter is available now, and you can read it here. It even features our new logo.
It is also filed in the Bygone Bungo newsletter archive with its predecesors.