Green light for £100m Glasgow development featuring 11-storey hotel

Councillors have given the green light for a landmark £100 million development in the centre of Glasgow that will include an 11-storey hotel.

'The Met Tower is intrinsic to Glasgow’s identity'
'The Met Tower is intrinsic to Glasgow’s identity'

Property development and investment firm Osborne+Co has achieved planning consent from Glasgow City Council to create the mixed-use scheme following the submission of a detailed planning and listed building application last April.

The project will include the transformation of the City of Glasgow College building, known as the Met Tower, on North Hanover Street, to deliver 120,000 square feet of Grade-A office space.

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The firm plans to demolish an existing “podium” building facing Cathedral Street to make way for a 260-bed hotel across 11 floors, which would connect to the Met Tower via a landscaped plaza, accessible to the public.

The firm plans to demolish an existing 'podium' building facing Cathedral Street to make way for a 260-bed hotel across 11 floors, which would connect to the Met Tower via a landscaped plaza, accessible to the public.

In total, the mixed-use development will represent a £100m investment from Osborne+Co, which also has a landmark project underway on the city’s Argyle Street which will become JP Morgan’s European technology hub, accommodating up to 2,700 staff.

Development director Will Hean said: “The Met Tower is intrinsic to Glasgow’s identity and we’ve worked closely with key stakeholders to ensure that our final proposal complements the surrounding area and provides dynamic indoor and outdoor space, which will capitalise on its central location beside Queen Street train station.

“Achieving planning consent comes at a critical time in the real estate market which continues to be challenged because of the coronavirus pandemic.

“Despite this, we are committed to investing significantly in Glasgow as we recognise the strength and diversity of the Glasgow economy. Glasgow’s tech sector in particular will be significant as the economy works its way back to strength.”

He added: “We’d like to thank Glasgow City Council for its cooperation and support in what has been a true partnership approach.

“We are incredibly pleased that they share our vision to create a first-class mixed-use development and we look forward to continuing our relationship as we progress our proposal.

“The scheme will help aid the city’s economic recovery and we are confident it will be welcomed by decision-makers and the community alike with its array of new offerings.”

Given the building’s location in the heart of the Glasgow City Innovation District and its proximity to the University of Strathclyde, the firm said it was confident that the space would be attractive to tech firms as well as other sectors of the market.

The existing glazing and distinctive covered gables on the Met Tower will be replaced on a like-for-like basis and the existing internal structure of the category B-listed building will be opened up to provide “efficient floorplates with cutting-edge interior design”.

A double-height office space on the rooftop will include a fully glazed gable, its own terrace and a viewing gallery overlooking George Square and the wider city.

Stuart Patrick, Glasgow Chamber of Commerce chief executive, said: “This is excellent news and a strong sign of continued investor confidence in the long-term future of Glasgow City Centre. It is a bonus that the Met Tower office and hotel development sits within the University of Strathclyde’s Glasgow City Innovation District.”

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