Glasgow council could look at ‘long-term alternatives’ to M8 in city centre

A Glasgow councillor is calling for the local authority to look at ‘long-term alternatives’ to the M8 in the city centre.

Newly elected Green councillor, Bailie Elaine Gallagher will ask her Glasgow colleagues on Thursday to back a motion which could see major changes to the M8.

If the motion passes, the council would instruct officials to carry out a feasibility study into options to reduce the adverse impacts of the city-centre sections of the motorway, including the possible redesign and replacement of the central section.

The councillors would also consider any infrastructure improvements of the city-centre sections within the context of ‘reducing demand and lowering greenhouse gas emissions’.

Her motion states: “Council also notes that the propping of the Woodside Viaduct alone, to allow for permanent works to begin, is estimated at over £35 million; and that these works are intended to take place over a period of four years, at which point the total cost will be significantly greater.

“Council believes the public cost of maintaining an ageing motorway in the city-centre is significant and warrants further investigation of long-term alternatives, including an M8 Green Infrastructure Cap, to re-stitch the city-centre to Anderston and the West End, as well as additional options to further reduce the impact of the M8 on the city centre.”

There have been calls in recent years to look at possibly removing the M8 in the city centre, arguing that the land could be used for housing, businesses and parks.

Ms Gallagher’s motion claims that communities based around the M8 face many challenges and that the negative impacts of car-use affect those who don’t own one.

It states: “Council notes that negative impacts for people are not evenly distributed across the city; that over half of Glasgow’s population do not own a car, yet the impact of dominant road infrastructure and excessive car-use affects those already experiencing poverty and inequality the most.”