Glasgow Architecture News 2022, Strathclyde Buildings, Architects, Scotland Design Images

Glasgow Building News 2022, Strathclyde

post updated 27 May 2022

26 May 2022
Delivering The New Homes Scotland Needs
The importance of ongoing collaboration between Scotland’s home building sector and the Scottish Government was the focus of attention at the Homes for Scotland Annual Lunch & Awards:
Scottish Architecture News

23 May 2022
Trio Of Wins For Scotland’s Home Builders At Industry Awards
Three of Scotland’s home builders are celebrating winning headline awards at the return of trade body Homes for Scotland’s (HFS) annual ceremony held in Edinburgh last Friday 20 May:
Homes For Scotland 2022 Awards Winners News

20 May 2022
The Great Tapestry of Scotland Gallery
The Great Tapestry of Scotland Visitor Centre Galashiels Building
The Great Tapestry of Scotland Gallery building design by Glasgow’s Page \ Park architects is in Galashiels at the heart of the Scottish Borders. The building was designed to house a unique visual history of the nation crafted by the hands of a thousand stitchers.

19 May 2022
Helenvale Street for Parkhead Housing Association
anderson bell + christie were appointed by Parkhead Housing Association to develop proposals for a residential development on a currently derelict site in the Parkhead area of Glasgow. The scheme sits a stone’s throw from Parkhead Cross and to the rear of Parkhead Library:
Helenvale Street Glasgow

18 May 2022
St Rollox Locomotive Works Listing News
The former St Rollox Locomotive Works in Springburn has been listed at Category B in recognition of its special architectural and historic interest, Historic Environment Scotland (HES) announced today, Wednesday 18 May.
St Rollox Locomotive Works Listing News

17 May 2022
Holmes Miller bolsters green credentials with raft of promotions
Holmes Miller has strengthened its senior team as it continues to grow with the promotion of seven staff across its Glasgow and London offices.

Matt Heaney has been promoted to Project Director in recognition of his contribution to the growth of the residential sector with a particular focus on Later Living opportunities across the UK and Ireland:

Holmes Miller Glasgow Architects

16 May 2022
Magnet – New Office Building in Glasgow
Magnet Glasgow Office Building, Princes House
Mosaic Architecture + Design, one of Scotland’s most experienced practices, has submitted a planning application on behalf of Garroch Investments to demolish Glasgow’s Princes House and develop Magnet, a brand-new class-leading £75M Grade A office development with the highest environmental credentials:
Magnet Glasgow Office Building

16 May 2022
John H Young Bursary for University of Glasgow students
DM Hall, one of Scotland’s largest independent firms of chartered surveyors, currently celebrating its 125th anniversary, has launched a £500 annual bursary scheme open to any student entering the MSc course in Real Estate Management at the University of Glasgow. The scheme, which will get under way later this year, honours the enduring contribution made both to the profession of surveying and to his firm by its former Senior Partner, John H Young:
John H Young Bursary for University of Glasgow students

16 May 2022
Homes For Scotland New Chief Executive News
Homes for Scotland (HFS) has announced Jane Wood as its new Chief Executive with effect from Wednesday 1 June. Read more here:
Edinburgh Building News 2022

12 May 2022
Share your views on Cumbernauld Town Centre
Historic Environment Scotland (HES) is asking members of the public to share their views on Cumbernauld Town Centre, after the organisation was asked to consider designating the building as a listed building:
Cumbernauld Town Centre public consultation

10 May 2022
Scottish Design Awards 2022 Finalists
The final shortlist for the Scottish Design Awards 2022 is unveiled, from which all this year’s winners will be named:
Scottish Design Awards 2022

10 May 2022
The Den, Tighnabruaich
Jamie Ross, Founder of Technique Architecture and Design was the project architect, and the project was undertaken in collaboration with Paul Stallan and Stallan-Brand Architects. The main building was built in 1870s and housed 6 flats, with two further flats in the small adjoining cottage:
The Den, Tighnabruaich

6 May 2022
Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Exhibition
Scott Sutherland School of Architecture Exhibition 2022

5 May 2022
Spectrum Properties expands its property portfolio in the East End

Spectrum Properties expands its property portfolio following planning permission to develop further business and commercial units in Glasgow’s East End.

Bill Roddie, Spectrum Properties:
Spectrum Properties Bill Roddie

Glasgow-headquartered Spectrum Properties is set to expand an existing business park on a brownfield site in south east Glasgow with a range of different sized industrial and commercial units on a 1.8-acre site in Broad Street, close to the city centre.

Since 1861 the site has had various incarnations including use as a cotton mill, an egg distribution factory, a printworks and a Fire Brigade storage facility.

Now, the family-owned company has received full planning permission to bring new life to the neighbourhood by constructing and operating up to five new business units for general industry, storage, distribution and general business operations. The combined purchase and build-out cost will be around £3m.

One of the largest property companies in Scotland, Spectrum Properties, which focuses primarily on commercial property and owns some 700 such properties across Glasgow, has in recent years moved increasingly into residential development.

Managing Director, Bill Roddie, said: “the new development in Broad Street, which is bounded by Fordneuk Street and the Camlachie Burn, stands directly across from our existing Broad Street Industrial Estate.

“So, we know the area exceptionally well, having developed two acres of the site as successful, fully tenanted commercial units in recent years.

“Equally, we are aware that there continues to be substantial underlying demand from business people for units of these dimensions and specification. Developments such as these are part of our contribution to the ongoing regeneration of Glasgow’s East End and we are confident that a significant number of jobs will be created when these units are occupied.”

Spectrum Properties directly employs 75 people and the same number of sub-contractors. It is actively recruiting to cope with rapid expansion. Established by Mr Roddie in 1988, the company now has a portfolio valuation of £60 million and a turnover more than £5 million.

3 May 2022
CICV tells construction clients that rise in project costs reflects ongoing global turmoil

The Construction Industry Collective Voice (CICV) has reassured clients that ongoing price rises for projects are caused by global events not “profiteering” – and says any increases only reflect the spiralling costs that are affecting the whole construction industry.

Clients have voiced concerns at the increasing costs of construction work, but the body insists this is due only to ongoing global events sparking a rise in fuel costs and shortages of raw materials and labour.

Iain McIlwee, Chief Executive of CICV member the Finishes and Interiors Sector (FIS), said: “The war in Ukraine, energy price hikes, impact of Brexit and fallout from COVID-19 have all created a ‘perfect storm’ just as there is a surge in demand, with price increases being imposed on the industry as a result.

“Construction professionals are increasingly being forced to shoulder these ongoing rises, particularly when it comes materials, and are having no option but to pass these increases on to clients. But it is not profiteering – it is a necessity for these businesses to survive.”

The CICV’s Post-Brexit & Trade sub-group this week discussed the higher costs for raw materials, energy, labour and transport being faced by construction businesses of all sizes in Scotland, with particular focus on inflationary pressures for SMEs caused by external factors.

Mr McIlwee added: “This is a really challenging time for all in the construction supply chain with costs rising, often at short notice. The critical thing now is that we work together as a supply chain.

“Too often in construction we have contracted down all risks, but we are now in a position where fixed prices could undermine the resilience of contractors or suppliers and we need to adopt a more collaborative approach and consider how fluctuations clauses can be deployed and any risks fairly shared so as not to undermine the quality or viability of a project or businesses.”

The CICV says as well as the negative impact of political, military and health issues, the withdrawal of red diesel in April has also led to higher costs for construction firms.

Chris Cassley, Policy Manager at CICV member the Construction Plant-hire Association (CPA), said: “The UK Government’s environmental strategy with the removal of red diesel for construction plant has undoubtedly contributed to the current financial impact on industry, and despite representations to government departments, has proceeded regardless.

“The rise in energy and material prices, together with supply chain pressures and higher inflationary figures, has led to a tipping-balance for suppliers and customers alike, and in many instances resulted in necessary price increases. These increases are very likely to be passed back up to the client and for government projects, it will be the taxpayer who will ultimately have to pay.”

Another warning came from Andrew Richards, Strategic Director of Safedem and a member of the Construction Scotland Industry Leadership Group, (representing SMEs and the supply chain) which is working in tandem with CICV to support the industry.

Mr Richards said: “The knock-on effects caused by the global events of the past two years looks like they will continue for the immediate future, so clients should consider fluctuations and rises in construction costs as part of ‘the new normal’ and shouldn’t expect prices to fall any time soon.

“Construction professionals are equally concerned about the uncertainty that surrounds the marketplace and are only passing on cost increases through necessity, not greed.”

The Post-Brexit & Trade panel is one of 12 sub-groups run by the CICV, covering a range of issues ranging from health and safety and skills to the supply chain and project bank accounts.

The collective was rebranded from the Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum at the start of 2022 to reflect its widened remit, which now covers all areas of construction.

Since its creation in March 2020, the CICV has drawn on the collective expertise of its members to maintain a steady supply of information and practical advice to the sector as well as carrying out surveys, hosting webinars and making appeals to government ministers.

2 May 2022
Historic Environment Scotland Green Recovery Statement
Historic Environment Scotland sets out its vision for how heritage can be the keystone of Scotland’s green recovery with publication of its Green Recovery Statement for the historic environment:

Historic Environment Scotland Green Recovery Statement

27 Apr 2022
Built Environment – Smarter Transformation News
Built Environment – Smarter Transformation, formerly Construction Scotland Innovation Centre, has announced a new strategic focus prioritising the built environment’s transition to zero carbon and improving the sector’s contribution to the fight against climate change:
Built Environment – Smarter Transformation News

27 Apr 2022
Glasgow Institute of Architects AGM News
The 154th Annual General Meeting of the Glasgow Institute of Architects takes place on 28th April 2022 at 17:00 at the CCA.

The Annual General Meeting of the GIA is held once a year and is where the President gives an update on the activities of the chapter for the preceding year and the Office Bearers, including the President, and members of Council are elected for the following year.

Find out more information at: https://gia.org.uk/giaagm2022

The Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland
20 Apr 2022
Cumbernauld Town Centre Listing News
Listing application submitted for imperilled Cumbernauld town centre, amid plans for Brutalist megastructure demolition:
Cumbernauld Town Centre

13 Apr 2022
Clyde Gateway Community Park
Clyde Gateway Community Park Glasgow
image courtesy of developer
Work is underway to transform a site in the East End of Glasgow into a community park after a £1m investment from Clyde Gateway, Scotland’s most ambitious regeneration project:
Clyde Gateway

12 Apr 2022
St Enoch Centre Glasgow Redevelopment News
St Enoch Centre Glasgow Renewal
image courtesy of architects practice
Following the appointment by asset and development manager Sovereign Centros, urban renewal practice Leslie Jones Architecture (LJA) has submitted a planning application to transform the St. Enoch Centre in Glasgow into Scotland’s foremost sustainable, mixed-use development with retail, leisure, entertainment, offices and hospitality:
St Enoch Centre Glasgow Redevelopment

12 Apr 2022
Homes for Scotland responds to Scottish Conservative home building boost proposal
Homes for Scotland respond to Douglas Ross’ announcement that the Scottish Conservatives would increase home building targets to 25,000 new properties each year:
Edinburgh Building News 2022

11 Apr 2022
Mansion House in Tollcross Park

Spectrum Properties to preserve historic Mansion House in Tollcross Park in prestigious development for Glasgow’s East End:

The future of the A-listed Mansion House, the Scottish baronial masterpiece in Tollcross Park in Glasgow, has been secured by its sale to a local property company which has already contributed hugely to the preservation and enhancement of some of the East End’s most outstanding buildings.

Family-owned developer Spectrum Properties, which operates all over Glasgow, Edinburgh and Stirlingshire, has paid an undisclosed sum to save the building and plans to spend a further £1 million converting its 13 spacious apartments for rental.

Spectrum Properties Bill Roddie

The purchase, from Shettleston Housing Association, is the latest development in the building’s 174-year history and will create much-needed homes in the park, which is regarded as one of the East End’s most attractive assets.

The Mansion House, built by the architect David Bryce for the mine-owning Dunlop family, features classic crow-stepped gables, corbelled turrets and pointed roofs. The new homes will be served by a private road sweeping through the park.

Spectrum Properties has been instrumental in preserving much of Glasgow’s Victorian architectural and industrial heritage and has invested tens of millions of pounds in saving and repurposing properties of recognised architectural merit.

Spectrum Properties Managing Director Bill Roddie said: “The Mansion House is a quite spectacular property, built in a distinctive Scottish style and set on the summit of what was then the Dunlop family’s private estate.

“In its essentials the building is similar to the Great Western Road, Glasgow mansion of the art collector and city benefactor, Sir William Burrell which we restored as high-end apartments a couple of years ago. As ever, we plan to undertake a sympathetic restoration of the entire property, keeping it in its original form and retaining the 13 residential apartments currently onsite.

“It has had its ups and downs over the years, and at one stage was facing demolition before it was preserved by a far-sighted restoration project which was completed nearly 30 years ago. We are delighted now to be able to take on the challenge of custodianship.

“When completed Tollcross House will be the centrepiece of the park and will complement other improvement work such as the £1 million restoration of the Winter Gardens glass house, which is a classic example of its kind.”

It is anticipated that the new properties in the Mansion House will be ready for market by the end of next year.

Spectrum Properties has previously been involved in preserving properties such as Victorian warehouses in French Street and Carstairs Street in Dalmarnock; the historic Shakespeare Street public school in the West End; the façade and towers of architecturally important Golfhill School in Dennistoun; and a factory on the 19th century Dixon’s Blazes Industrial Estate.

One of the largest property companies in Scotland, it has also restored and converted sites such as Hillhead High School in Cecil Street in Glasgow, the former Hydepark Public School in Springburn and Shettleston Public Baths..

Although Spectrum Properties has moved into residential development in the last 10 years, its primary focus remains on commercial property. It owns some 700 commercial properties across the city, comprising 70% of its group holdings.

Spectrum Properties directly employs 75 people and the same number of sub-contractors. It is actively recruiting to cope with rapid expansion. Established by Mr Roddie in 1988, the company now has a portfolio valuation of £60 million and a turnover in excess of £5 million.

6 Apr 2022
Kepdarroch Farmhouse
This is a new-build home on a working farm, designed by Baillie Baillie for a young family. Set in an open agricultural landscape, the house is arranged loosely around an informal courtyard, making reference to familiar clusters of farm buildings, steadings and cottages:
Farmhouse in Stirlingshire

5 Apr 2022
New Dumfries High School
Dumfries and Galloway Council has appointed hub South West Scotland, the construction and infrastructure-focused partnership which works with local authorities and private sector enterprises in Lanarkshire, Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway, to develop the new Dumfries High School:
Dumfries Architecture

4 Apr 2022
Laidlaw Music Centre Building, St Andrews
Designed by architects Flanagan Lawrence, the £12.5m Laidlaw Music Centre will become an integral part of the St Andrews cultural quarter:
Dumfries Buildings

1 Apr 2022
Holmes Miller make announcement of new Equity Director
Ryan Holmes’ promotion to Equity Director follows a 20-year journey at the company, where he has championed new sustainability practices and the early adoption of digital technology.
As part of Holmes Miller Architects’ growth strategy and continued expansion across the UK, the business today announces the promotion of Ryan Holmes to the position of Equity Director, based out of their Glasgow design studio:
Holmes Miller

31 Mar 2022
Key Planning Document Risks Making Housing Crisis Worse As Shortfall Since 2008 Approaches 100,000 Homes

Home building body Homes for Scotland (HFS) has said that a key Scottish Government document outlining the approach to planning and development to 2045 risks making the country’s housing deficit even worse.

In its submission to the consultation on National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4), HFS highlighted that the document, as drafted, “will likely reduce the number of homes delivered, thereby exacerbating the housing crisis”. It also highlights:

 the lack of recognition given to Scotland’s housing crisis, despite the delivery of new homes being the original purpose of planning reform. HFS is asking for housing delivery to be included in NPF4 as a national development.

 the lack of detail in relation to the delivery strategy and associated financial interventions that will be required to deliver the ambitions of NPF4.

 the failure to address the ongoing resourcing challenges within Local Authorities whilst adding to planning officers’ workloads with a raft of, at times, contradictory policies with no clear decision-making hierarchy, not to mention the introduction of a number of new technical reports.

 proposed new wording to support the identification of a deliverable pipeline of housing sites and to offer workable solutions when the pipeline is found to be under-delivering.

 the lack of an evidence base for new policy direction such as requiring vacant and derelict land to be allocated as a priority before greenfield release.

Of particular concern, however, is the figure proposed as the Minimum All Tenure Housing Land Requirement. HFS argues that the tool used for calculating this relies too heavily on past population trends and fails to identify the full range of housing need, with many excluded from the count (eg single adults living with parents or sharing a flat, families living in a home with inadequate bedroom space). This follows a recent report showing that the cumulative housing shortfall since the global financial crisis is now approaching 100,000.

HFS Head of Planning Liz Hamilton said:

“Whilst we do welcome the focus upon the ‘deliverability’ of sites and broadly agree with the intent and purpose of several of the policies, we are extremely concerned that, as it currently stands, NPF4 will lead to significantly fewer homes being built.

“Indeed, it appears that Scotland’s housing crisis has been forgotten but this is equally as important as the climate emergency and nature crisis. A better balance must be struck to respond to all.

“With regard to the Housing Land Requirement, the purpose of a target was to shift focus away from numbers and on to the delivery, design and function of our future places. In order to do that, however, the numbers must at least reflect completions over the last ten years as an absolute minimum. Unfortunately, draft NPF4 falls short on this and looks like it is planning for decline.

“The Scottish Government intends to have NPF4 passed before the parliament’s summer recess but, given the importance of this document and the extent of revision that we believe is required, we are calling for a pause until updated proposals are published in full and properly consulted on and scrutinised by MSPs.

“We all have our own examples, whether it’s ourselves or people we know, of the struggle it is to find a home that meets your needs and that you can afford. That is why we need to deliver more homes, both private for sale and social affordable housing, not less. It is crucial that the public understand what is at stake if our young people, growing families, ageing population and future generations are to have the safety and security of calling somewhere home.”

29 Mar 2022
Burrell Museum Reopening News
Glasgow’s A-listed Burrell Museum is now open after refurbishment and redisplay, this award-winning building houses a unique collection in a beautiful woodland setting.

29 Mar 2022
Scotland Faces 100,000 Homes Shortfall
Trade body Homes for Scotland expresses its concern at latest Scottish Government housing statistics. The stats show marked drops in housing association completions and approvals:
Scottish Architecture News

27 Mar 2022
The Glasgow School of Art launches search for new Chair of the Board of Governors
Through executive search consultants, Saxton Bampfylde, The Glasgow School of Art launched the process for the election of a new Chair of the Board of Governors:
Glasgow School of Art

23 Mar 2022
Homes For Scotland Announces 2022 Awards Shortlist
Home building body Homes for Scotland (HFS) announces the shortlist for its 2022 awards programme as it plans for a return to the largest annual gathering of its kind where winners will be announced:
Homes For Scotland 2022 Awards Shortlist

The Burrell Collection Restoration AHSS lecture
Thursday 24 March
AHSS Strathclyde
Venue: Online & in person at the Renfield Centre, 260 Bath Street, Glasgow G2 4JP

The Impact of Enslavement on Scotland’s Built Environment AHSS lecture
Monday 11 April
Venue: Online & in person at Augustine United Church, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL

See the Glasgow Architecture Events page for details

15 Mar 2022
Virtual Event – Improving Lives with Architectural Regeneration

Join the first #DesignPopUp virtual panel of 2022. This talk with Anderson Bell + Christie and Renfrewshire Council will explore how a community-led regeneration project can improve the lives of both individuals and the community itself.

Join us on Tuesday 22nd March at 10.30 am for ‘Improving Lives with Architectural Regeneration’ with Project Architect and Practice Director, Stephen Lamb, and Renfrewshire Council’s Head of Housing, Fraser Carlin, we will have the opportunity to hear all about the challenges, processes and outcome of the award-winning Johnstone Castle Regeneration project.

Tuesday 22nd March, 10.30am

The Panel

Stephen Lamb
Director, Anderson Bell + Christie Architects
Stephen is a chartered architect with a keen interest in all aspects of architecture, particularly housing and sustainability. After working in Cullen and London, he joined the practice in 1995. Stephen led the consultant team and was directly involved with the development of the Johnstone Castle redevelopment for Renfrewshire Council.

Fraser Carlin
Head of Housing, Renfrewshire Council
Fraser Carlin is the Head of Housing Services at Renfrewshire Council. He oversees the management of some 12,000 homes and the delivery of the Council’s Homelessness services and the Council’s Regeneration and Housing Investment Programme.
Fraser has worked for several Councils across his 30-year career and has been with Renfrewshire Council since 2007.

Tuesday, 22nd March at 10.30am

9 Mar 2022
RIAS Awards Winners in 2022
The shortlisted buildings for the 2022 RIAS Awards are spread widely across the country and include new school and college buildings in Cumnock, Falkirk and Jedburgh, the restoration of an iconic Modernist house in Galashields, a community centre in Fife and pioneering low energy homes:

RIAS Awards 2022 Winners

7 March 2022
HES seeks views on listing of St Rollox Locomotive Works in Glasgow
St Rollox Locomotive Works could soon be recognised with listed status, as Historic Environment Scotland (HES) announced it is seeking views from the public on proposals to list the former railway works site in Springburn at Category B due to its special historic and architectural interest:

St Rollox Locomotive Works Listing

6 March 2022
Paisley and Govan Building Photos
The Luma Tower, a residential building in Govan area, ne of the best preserved examples of Art Deco architecture in the city, protected as a category B listed building since 1988:
Luma Tower building Govan Glasgow
Glasgow Building Photos 2022

4 March 2022
Lucent at 50 Bothwell Street Glasgow Offices Start on Site
Lucent at 50 Bothwell Street Glasgow offices atrium
Onsite works have begun on the £35m redevelopment of 50 Bothwell Street. The commercial building will rebrand as ‘Lucent’ to create the next generation of prime, smart enabled offices in Glasgow, that will feature 14 outdoor terraces, a first for the city:

Lucent at 50 Bothwell Street Glasgow Offices

4 Mar 2022
new Chryston community hub building construction start
Chryston Community Hub in North Lanarkshire
Work on a new £20 m community hub in Chryston has begun, with a turf-cutting event to mark the start of construction taking place on Monday 28 February. North Lanarkshire Council is working in partnership with NHS Lanarkshire on the project that will deliver a 21st-century learning environment along with state-of-the-art health and wellbeing facilities:

Chryston Community Hub in North Lanarkshire

24 Feb 2022
Glasgow Architecture Jobs News
New vacancies:
– Architectural Director job at an AJ100 Edinburgh Practice. £60,000-£70,000 plus highly competitive benefits.
– Architect
– Senior Technologist / Senior Architect
Glasgow Architecture Jobs

15 Feb 2022
The Maker’s House, Lenzie Conservation Area
Loader Monteith Architects has unified a subdivided Victorian merchant’s house in the Lenzie Conservation Area of Glasgow for an architect and ceramicist, adding a striking black timber-clad extension complete with pottery studio:

The Maker’s House

10 Feb 2022
Urban Union Breathe New Life Into Historic Gorbals Building
166 Gorbals Street Glasgow building design team
photograph courtesy of Urban Union
Urban Union has opened a new free to use community space featuring a gallery and exhibition area at 166 Gorbals Street, a Glasgow landmark and one of the last remaining historic buildings in the Gorbals.
Built in 1900 and designed by architect James Salmon, the Grade A-listed building was once home to the British Linen Bank but lay derelict for decades. It was acquired by Southside Housing Association in the early nineties and has recently undergone a £2.6million restoration:

166 Gorbals Street Glasgow Building News

9 Feb 2022
Cost of living crisis – view

The cost of living crisis is upon us as household bills and interest rates rise, but residential property
will always weather the storm

By John McHugh

DM Hall John McHugh

This time last year, amid frenzied activity in the residential property market in Scotland, driven by the unprecedented external factors of which we are all aware, I suggested that a levelling out and a return to more normal conditions might not be a bad development.

Chance, as they say, would be a fine thing. Instead, the impulse to transact has remained as buoyant as ever, catalysed by what now seems like the new normal – a constant lack of supply and heightened demand – leading, of course, to the ever-upward march of prices.

As we progress through the early stages of 2022, whilst it would seem reasonable to expect this exuberance to last a bit longer, the crystal ball has become rather cloudy of late as a number of fairly significant external factors start to intrude.

These include the spectre of inflation, every central banker’s recurring nightmare. This (February 2022) month’s Bank of England Monetary Policy Report says that inflation is expected to rise to around 7% in spring before the heavy artillery of interest rate rises is deployed to beat it back down.

This will come as a novel experience to many actual and aspiring homeowners who have known nothing other than a benign interest rate environment, but it will be nowhere near as bad as what buyers of a previous generation lived through in the seventies and eighties, when rates regularly hit 16% and 17%.

Utility prices are rising across the board – regulator Ofgem has just raised the energy price cap by £693, lifting average bills to £1,971 – and apparent muddle and indecision on future fuel security policy means price increases will continue to cause economic pain across the board.

What does this concerted assault on the general cost of living mean for the Scottish housing market as we plough through the year? That again depends on a number of interconnected factors.

Firstly, in these early weeks of the year, demand is still very much in evidence and there is still a plentiful supply of lending finance available. Deals remain on offer and borrowing is still very affordable although the spectre of interest rate rises could alter that.

Secondly, it is generally recognised that the savings mountain built up over the Covid years – £92 billion in the UK in Q2 2020 and a major factor in the demand curve – could now be subject to an element of inflationary erosion and a consequent dampening of enthusiasm.

It will take a long time to erode all the surplus money currently warming people’s pockets but the inevitable changes in expectations might direct the market back to the days when affordability rather than aspiration was the primary motivating factor.

Time will tell. Meantime, good areas in Scotland’s cities remain in strong demand and peripheral markets will probably continue to do well as unsuccessful urban buyers look further afield.

And, while governments may be encouraging people to return to their offices, agile or hybrid working – call it what you will – is now embedded in many people’s lifestyles and they are in no rush to consign the WFH abbreviation to history.

This means that the migration to the countryside and coasts is unlikely to abate, as gardens, views, countryside and local amenities have assumed a much greater importance to many. As well as offering a very different lifestyle, they have the added attraction of often representing better value.

At the moment, the Skip Index is also very much in the ascendancy. This, like the Crane Index in city centres, is an informal guide to local economic activity and skips have been littering the streets as many home owners choose to renovate, repair or extend rather than move.

As evidenced by our Architectural Services division – which provides plans and help with necessary permissions – one of the side effects of the lack of supply is that many people living in good areas are choosing not to get involved in the market contest and are enhancing their current situation instead.

So, there could be turbulent times ahead with significant challenges to personal finances. The much-trumpeted cost-of-living crisis is squarely upon us and could be the worst that younger generations have ever experienced, with the Bank of England warning that disposable incomes will take their biggest hit in 30 years.

However, residential property has been and will remain an aspirational and attractive proposition. People have a recurring and continuing desire to better themselves and aspiration is unlikely to go out of fashion any time soon, whatever the cost.

John McHugh is Managing Partner of DM Hall Chartered Surveyors.

1 Feb 2022
Marking 25 years of the Scottish Design Awards
Organised by Urban Realm, in partnership with The Drum, the Scottish Design Awards have been showcasing boundary shaping work, industry best practice and sustainability in all forms for a quarter of a century. Now on the cusp of a new era, we will be celebrating a new generation of design professionals who’ve gone above and beyond in delivering their briefs:

Scottish Design Awards 2022

25 Jan 2022
Glasgow School of Art fire: Inquiry unable to find cause
Fire investigators have failed to find a cause for the fire that destroyed Glasgow School of Art’s world-renowned Mackintosh building in 2018, report the BBC today:
Glasgow School of Art

24 Jan 2022
First academics move into new £116 million University of Glasgow research facility
University of Glasgow ARC: Advanced Research Centre
photo : Keith Hunter
The University of Glasgow welcomes the first researchers into its pioneering flagship research facility, the ARC (Advanced Research Centre). The £116 million, 16,000 metre-square building will house a collaborative community of academics from across a range of disciplines and will be fully operational from Spring this year:
University of Glasgow ARC: Advanced Research Centre

15 Jan 2022
Milngavie Streetscape Design
Since 2018, Glasgow’s Page\Park Architects have been working closely with Milngavie BID, a community organisation formed of stakeholders and representatives of local businesses, to strategise and deliver a series of incremental projects in Milngavie Town Centre. The initiative was community-led, and the success of this first project, has stimulated a wider programme of improvements in the town centre:

Milngavie Streetscape

13 + 6 Jan 2022
New Glasgow Architecture Photos
A few new pictures taken around town on a sunny day, Wednesday 5 January:
Glasgow Building Photos 2022

Happy New Year to all our readers!
Isabelle and Adrian at e-architect wish you a Happy New Year.

Two BDP adaptive reuse design projects make the AJ Retrofit Awards shortlist
University of Strathclyde Learning and Teaching Project
photo : David Barbour
BDP adaptive reuse design projects

Strathclyde Architectural Designs

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