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am i just having a brain fart or is it not hugely different to what was built? There's a tower element where none exists and 'tay house' is larger (and no berkley suite!) but its otherwise pretty similar
 

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Needs to be done really. Nice find, Roddy.

Re route of M8 is still my preferred option, but covering it over would really heal a huge scar on the city. I'd love to lose the Kingston Bridge too. Replace with something lower, or tunnel underground :)
I'm kinda torn on the Kingston Bridge. I know I should hate it, but... dat span! It has a certain elegance to it. If we could get tall buildings built on the gap sites at either side of it on the north bank and create a canyon feel, it'd be pretty cool. Some kind of illumination or lighting scheme would be good too.
 

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Not Glasgow specific but an article in the Economist i thought was relevant with all the Sauchiehall Street/Charing Cross/M8 talk...

http://www.economist.com/news/international/21663219-cities-are-starting-put-pedestrians-and-cyclists-motorists-makes-them

AT 6am on a sweltering Sunday the centre of Gurgaon, a city in northern India, is abuzz. Children queue for free bicycles to ride on a 4km stretch of road that will be cordoned off from traffic for the next five hours. Teenagers pedal about, taking selfies; middle-aged men and women jog by. On a stage, a black-belt demonstrates karate; yoga practice is on a quieter patch down the street. Weaving through the crowd dispensing road-safety tips is a traffic cop with a majestic moustache.

Gurgaon’s weekly jamboree is called Raahgiri (“reclaim your streets”). Amit Bhatt of EMBARQ, a green think-tank, started it in 2013, inspired by Bogotá’s ciclovía, pictured above, for which Colombia’s capital closes 120km of streets on Sundays and holidays. Such events are part of a movement that is accelerating around the world.

From Guangzhou to Brussels to Chicago, cities are shifting their attention from keeping cars moving to making it easier to walk, cycle and play on their streets. Some central roads are being converted into pedestrian promenades, others flanked with cycle lanes. Speed limits are being slashed. More than 700 cities in 50 countries now have bike-share schemes; the number has grown by about half in the past three years.

Cyclists and motorists have never liked sharing the road. In “A Cool and Logical Analysis of the Bicycle Menace”, P.J. O’Rourke, a car-loving comic, grumbles that “one cannot drive around a curve” without meeting a “suicidal phalanx” of “huffing bicyclers”. Casey Neistat, a New York cyclist who was fined $50 for not riding in a bike lane, made a film of himself crashing into some of the unkindly parked cars that so often make that impossible.

Many cities are exploring ways to keep petrolheads and pedalophiles apart. Over 100, particularly in Latin America, close some roads to cars on weekends. Paris is leading the way in Europe, closing over 30km; Dublin and Milan plan to banish cars from their centres. Even Los Angeles (a city Steve Martin, a comic actor, satirised by getting in his car to drive three paces to his neighbour’s house in “LA Story”) recently announced plans for hundreds of miles of bus and cycle lanes.

In the rich world, these measures follow improvements in public transport—and congestion charges and other policies that make driving and parking in many cities a misery. The number of cars entering central London has dropped by a third since 2002. Three-fifths of Parisians owned a car in 2001; now two-fifths do. And some people are shifting from public transport to walking or cycling: a fifth as many journeys in London are now made by bike as on the Underground; 15 years ago, only a tenth were. All this makes cities safer and nicer, planners say. London hopes to attract footloose talent this way, says Isabel Dedring, its deputy mayor for transport.

The International Transport Forum, a think-tank, predicts that by 2050 the world’s roads will have to cope with 2.5 billion cars and light trucks, three times as many as today. Almost all the growth will be in developing countries. Some cities are building rail and subway systems; others are creating rapid-bus lanes. India plans to expand or launch rapid transit in 50 cities. But safety is often neglected.

The best way to get more people walking is to slow down traffic citywide, says Guillermo Peñalosa of 8 80 Cities, a Canadian lobby group. Slower traffic makes neighbourhoods quieter and safer. More than 80% of pedestrians hit by cars moving at 65kph die; at half that speed only 5% die. A 25mph (40kph) speed limit went into effect in New York last year. London recently cut the speed limit to 20mph on more than 280km of its roads and is getting rid of pedestrian-unfriendly giant roundabouts. In September Toronto will slow down traffic on more than 300km of its roads.

In cycling, Amsterdam and Copenhagen are the pacesetters, with a third of trips made by bicycle. More than half of Amsterdam’s residents use their bikes daily. London, New York and Paris all have plans to challenge them. All three cities are expanding their bike-share schemes and building new bike lanes, some on quiet roads with new, lower speed limits for cars, and others running through central areas and separated from motorised traffic.

Such schemes can quickly convince more people to start pedalling. They are particularly popular with women, who transport planners say are more nervous than men about sharing roads with roaring traffic and typically make up less than a quarter of urban cyclists. In 2007-2010 the Spanish city of Seville built an 80km network of separated two-way bicycle lanes; the share of trips in the city that were by bicycle went from nearly zero to 7%. In Taipei few women cycled before its YouBike share scheme started in 2009; now they are half of the city’s cyclists.

Bike-shares are spreading out beyond city centres and being linked with public transport, says Kevin Mayne of the European Cyclists’ Federation. In Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands some schemes are run by the railways. More than 100 cities have smartphone apps that show which docking stations have bicycles available. Riders of Copenhagen’s GoBike can plot routes and check travel bookings from an on-board GPS. Both bikes and public transport are more likely to be used when bike racks are placed on the front of buses, as in Boston and Washington, DC, and secure parking is provided at rail stations.

In 2014 Britain’s transport ministry looked at recently built cycling and walking infrastructure in eight cities. Standard cost-benefit analyses for planned transport infrastructure include a value for the lives saved (or lost) through changes in the number of accidents. Using the same figures for the lives prolonged by increased activity, it found that the cost of the schemes was repaid three-fold—and again in reduced congestion. London’s authorities calculate that if every Londoner switched to walking for trips under 2km, and to cycling for trips of 2-8km, the share who got enough exercise to remain healthy simply by getting around would rise from 25% to 60%. That would amount to 61,500 years of healthy life gained each year.

Even once-a-week exercise fiestas can boost health. A 2009 survey of participants in Bogotá’s Sunday ciclovías found that 42% of adults did as much exercise during the event as the World Health Organisation recommends for a week. (It ranks Colombia the world’s most sedentary country: see article.) Only 12% would have done so otherwise.

Yet the health gains from walking and cycling rarely feature in transport plans—partly because the benefits are reaped by national health ministries (and the people who get fitter, of course), rather than the cities that build the infrastructure. Britain is trying to align incentives better. Last year London’s transport authority published a “transport health action plan”: a ten-year scheme, backed by £4 billion of government money, that will redesign streets along lines recommended by public-health experts. And the country’s National Health Service (NHS) wants to help cities that are building cheap housing complexes to include health-promoting features, such as cycle routes and playgrounds.

As rich cities are, at last, undoing their past planning mistakes, activists in developing ones are trying to ensure that they are not repeated. They are lobbying for safe walking and cycling routes as well as better public transport, and for traffic laws to be enforced—before pollution and inactivity take their full toll. Convincing officials preoccupied with keeping cars moving can be tough: “This won’t work here,” one told Mr Bhatt when he proposed the Raahgiri and other ways to make Gurgaon’s streets more pedestrian-friendly. He persisted, getting 200 schoolchildren to cycle up to the city administration’s headquarters to demonstrate public support. His team has since also convinced the city to paint cycling lanes at the side of some streets; barriers will soon protect them from cars.

One user is Dilip Grover, a 62-year-old manager of a small firm. Not having cycled since college, he rediscovered its joys after hopping on a free bike at the Raahgiri. He now cycles 10km to work. The Raahgiri has changed attitudes, he thinks: many drivers also participate and now think twice before honking at a pedestrian or jumping a traffic light. It is a small start.
 

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I might have posted this before - but well worth re-posting.An inspirational piece by Graham Morrison that ought to be required reading for anyone building here...

http://www.alliesandmorrison.com/

The Art of Place-Making
Graham Morrison 1999
Originally published : “Brindleyplace -a model for Urban Regeneration’ ( Right Angle Publishing)



The essential business of cities is trade. If through design the successful exchange of ideas, business and culture is made difficult, a city will usually fail and it is with the design of buildings and the spaces they form that so much can be contributed to help us to take advantage of these essential opportunities which the coming together in cities can give us. To make places that support this healthy activity in a city, architecture must be grounded in how things are and in an understanding of how cities work.

While much of what we do necessarily happens inside buildings because we can both modify the environment and make things safe, the spaces between our buildings (its streets, lanes, squares and avenues) must make clear our understanding of where we are and encourage our participation in what the city has to offer. A good building, therefore, is a building which will not only meet the needs of its carefully defined internal brief, but will also acknowledge its inevitable effect on the world outside. The complete urban matrix of a successful city is both shaped and constantly reinvigorated by its buildings, and our consequent enjoyment of the places we inhabit as a community, will depend as much on the depth of consideration given to the design of its buildings as it does on the planning of the places themselves.

All places have a visual order and it is important that each building finds its place in its context. Not every building needs to be extraordinary and very often, the success of places depends on the calm (and reassuring) enjoyment of the straightforward. Convention is easily understood and makes our cities helpfully predictable and without the conventional, the extraordinary could not exist. Equally, uniformity can be relentless and disorientating and spaces need surprise to test and extend our expectations. There is always a fine line, however, between the provocative and the tasteless and between the outrageous and the dull, and for cities to survive generations the making of places must be an art which is circumspect of fashion.

Places also have an economic and social order and it is also important in the design of buildings that the city becomes safe and secure and available and accessible. In successful places, the public realm flows easily between the inside and outside, and buildings designed solely in response to the cautious single use requirements of an institutional investor will often fail to provide the richness of interaction (particularly at street level) which contributes so much to why people want to be there. Buildings that accommodate more than one use have a greater possibility of such a healthy interaction with the city, and places where people work, live and meet in the same location, are less likely to disappoint and fail. A creative legal and financial structure which allows buildings to be designed with such a rich mix of uses can therefore, usefully contribute as much to place making as design itself.

Successful place making depends therefore on an understanding of context, history, scale and proportion as well as on the meeting of needs of the intricate mercantile pressures which caused its being. If there is an art in place making, it should be based as the understanding of the complexities of both the economic as well as the visual order of the city and the confident control of its inherent ambiguities and contradictions. With this in mind, the place makers' skill could be similar to that of a Japanese calligrapher who, as each bold brush stroke is placed on the page, is in fact considering the white space it defines.
 
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