Glasgow's City Centre Task Force (CCTF) has announced plans to review the current model and concept of the 'Style Mile' - Argyle, Buchanan and Sauchiehall Streets - in the face of retail trends and increase in vacant units and sites that indicate the need to move to a mixed-use model in all town and city centres.
The review will be a collaborative piece of work carried out by the council with its CCTF partners that takes a masterplanning approach to reimagining these streets to help guide future planning policy and housing strategy, with the creation of a sustainable mix of uses (retail, residential, bars & restaurants, leisure, culture, public sector, etc) to create a modern, vibrant and sustainable city centre.
A priority in this review of the wider area will be Sauchiehall Street - with a vision to develop and drive footfall in this key city centre street with a mix of uses and high-quality public realm in the context of the emerging proposals for the Buchanan Galleries. This part of the review will take account of and complement the existing work undertaken via the Avenues programme.
The CCTF, whose membership comes from local, national and UK government; the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce; and the core city sectors including retail, hospitality, events, the night-time economy, further and higher education, transport and commercial property.
The CCTF is providing a public-private partnership response to economic challenges arising in Glasgow because of the pandemic, works with partner organisations, and is a central player in securing support and resources from the national governments to meet these challenges.
Councillor Angus Millar, Depute Convener for Inclusive Economic Growth at Glasgow City Council and Co-Chair of the City Centre Task Force, said: "We all want our city centre to be a place where people want to live, work, shop, visit, invest and do business. Sauchiehall, Argyle and Buchanan Streets are at the heart of Glasgow's shopping district, but we know that the retail sector is changing. Securing a vibrant, sustainable future for the city centre will mean supporting a range of uses - including retail, hospitality, office and residential - and undertaking a masterplanning approach will help identify the right mix for these key destination streets. It's vital that we take a strategic approach to supporting areas like Sauchiehall Street, identifying opportunities for the repurposing of vacant retail/commercial units, redeveloping gap sites and reviewing the balance of different uses of property there. This review will make a significant contribution to our recovery efforts and promoting a positive future for our city centre."
Stuart Patrick, chief executive of Glasgow Chamber of Commerce, said: "Glasgow has a city centre that relies not only on the footfall of local residents but on the wider catchment areas where the population traditionally depends on Glasgow for their shopping and leisure needs. As such, our city centre was disproportionately impacted by travel restrictions amid the pandemic, with recent closures such as Next on Argyle Street and Marks and Spencer on Sauchiehall Street highlighting just how in need of a masterplan our city is. We warmly welcome this recent announcement and look forward to working closely with the CCTF to consider how we create the conditions that will breathe life into the core of the city to increase footfall and attract future investment as we continue to grow and develop. This is an exciting time for Glasgow city centre and news of development proposals from St Enoch Centre, Buchanan Galleries and the City Innovation Districts will play a significant role in those plans."