Growing Glasgow: Over 250 flats to be built in Glasgow's Southside despite objections

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Over 250 flats are set to be built in Cathcart after developers secured permission from the council despite 85 objections from residents.

Glasgow’s planning committee has granted permission for 254 homes across five blocks on Newlands Road to Cala Homes and Celeros Flow Technology LLP.

Neighbours voiced concerns about over-development, design issues, overshadowing and loss of privacy as well as road safety fears. There were also 13 letters of support.

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At a planning hearing, Moray Stewart, land director at Cala Homes, said: “This opportunity is unique as it presents a sustainable and effective way to transform a brownfield derelict site into a thriving community.”

However, four objectors addressed the committee, with one saying he hasn’t spoken to anyone “that lives in the established residential development to the west that is in support of this design”.

“I think generally the residents are content to see residential development, but this design is not felt to be a good design,” he added. “The massing, the number of houses, the house type, the positioning are all very poor.”

He believes the plan will “overwhelm and change the character of the area” and urged councillors to “send this design back to Celeros for amendment”.

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Another local resident said the proposal should have included 25% social housing and raised road safety concerns, adding there have been 14 reported crashes “on this end of very quiet Newlands Road”. That “doesn’t include near misses, bumps, scratches or unreported crashes”, he said.

Known as The Foundry, the development will include a mix of one, two and three-bedroom flats as well as two and three-bedroom penthouse.

Currently owned by Celeros and previously used for its ClydeUnion Pumps factory, the land, deemed surplus by the firm, will be sold to Cala.

The development, which will involve an investment of around £61m, will include a play park and will see homes powered by ground source heat pumps. 

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A council official said Celeros has occupied the land for years but it is “no longer needed for manufacturing or industrial use”. The firm intends to invest the money from the sale of the site into growing the business, she added.

Councillors were told that Celeros intends to take on 48 new apprentices using money from the sale and will carry out works to the site which are “vital” to the “competitiveness of the business”.

The land was not earmarked for residential use in the city development plan, but the official said the council considers the change “acceptable”.

Cllr Ken Andrew, SNP, the planning committee chairman, said: “I think this looks to me to be a high quality development, I think there’s a number of mitigations in terms of the density of dwelling, given the planting and the green spaces that are proposed.

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“I think it’s a good development and it’s a good change from a contaminated brownfield site.”

Cllr Thomas Kerr, Conservative, said: “I think this is a high quality development; it’s utilising a site that’s brownfield, contaminated. It’s the kind of place where we would want a development to be.

“The reality is we are not going to get a perfect development, we are not going to keep everyone happy and this council has declared a housing emergency.”

The committee agreed to add a condition to ensure a traffic management survey is carried out, post 50% occupancy of the homes, to check “mitigations put in place in terms of traffic slowing and pedestrian access” are “appropriate”.

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Following the planning meeting, Mr Stewart said: “Securing planning permission from Glasgow City Council represents a significant milestone for Cala as we continue our vision to enhance urban communities with high-quality homes.”

Chris McVicker, chief financial officer for Celeros, said: “It’s fantastic that the go-ahead has now been given to this new development, which will bring much needed homes and jobs to the southside of Glasgow.

“Unlocking this surplus land will enable us to continue to invest in new opportunities for the business and the local economy, building on a heritage of over 135 years of design and manufacturing of pump equipment in Cathcart.”

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