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Gillespie Kidd Coia Scottish gems face demolition

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A trio of Gillespie, Kidd and Coia buildings could be flattened to make way for an Archial-designed mixed-use development.

Following the submission of a new planning application, East Dunbartonshire Council will consider the future of the concrete, Grade A-listed student hostel blocks at the former St Andrew’s Campus in Scotland (pictured). Members of the council’s planning board are due to visit the site later this summer.

Muse Developments wants to build 120 homes, a care home and commercial space on the plot on the outskirts of Glasgow.

Jon Wright, senior caseworker at the Twentieth Century Society, slammed the plans. He said: ‘[We] are alarmed that Category A-listed buildings by this internationally recognised practice are under threat. It is our belief that these buildings are eminently reusable and what any application should be doing is seeking to sympathetically restore them, not demolish and rebuild.’

The buildings, completed in 1968 and formerly known as Notre Dame College, have been empty since 2002, when Glasgow University declared the site surplus to its requirements. In 2007, the teaching blocks and sports hall of the college were demolished to make way for Bearsden Academy. At the time, it was planned to retain the remaining three blocks and convert them to housing.

But Muse said the structure of the buildings is ‘not economically viable to repair’, and the project can only be delivered with the demolition of the listed blocks.

Conservation body Historic Scotland said it has been involved in pre-application discussions with the council, but that it would only be formally consulted if consent was set to be granted.

This is not the first time this year Archial has found itself facing the fury of fans of post-war enthusiasts.

In June, the practice submitted revised proposals to bulldoze RMJM’s 1985 Balfour Stewart House in Edinburgh – an early post-modernist office block in the West Murrayfield conservation area – and replace it with 80 flats.

Archial was unavailable for comment.

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