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I enjoy observing the discussion which goes on on this forum and am very gratefull for the wealthy resource on Glasgow architecture which it brings. That said I am much more of an observer than a contributer of this forum.
I see the forum as a good place for a discussion, discourse and debate in Glasgow's contemporary architecture. I enjoy listening to the opinions of people who are interested in a subject which i am also interested and the debates that arise from them. However recently the forum appers to by a fan-club for GM-AD architects. It appears that as soon as someone critisises any of their work (i recall comments about Glasgow harbour) there is an outcry and these opinions are promptly deleted and there is a general panic that Alan will leave the forum. I find this incredibly frustrating, when this is the sort of subject where i would love to see some critical and lively debate. Im sure Alan is passionate man who would enjoy a discussion with other people of similar intrests about his work. GM-AD have strong opinions on ways to deal with the city and strong opinions should welcome critical debate.
I have to say that in my opinion the current development of Glasgow Harbour is a mistake that our future generations will have to suffer from. I find it frustrating when intelgent and well considered regeneratiosn such as the new gorbals prove to be such a sucess we do not make the most of this expirience. In new Gorbals we have seem a sensitive creation of community and a positive public realm. In Glasgow Harbour we are seeing completely inapporpriate high denisty developments.
I find it increasingly frustrating that GM-AD are given the status that they are given in Glasgow when, in my opinion, there work is detrimental to the City's Urban Fabric. Im afraid buildings such as the bewleys hotel, spectrum house and the radison are inconsiderate and incredably inappropriate brash peices of architecture. The latest development on clyde street would be a disaster for the clydeside skyline (particularly inconsidered use of color)

This a deomstration of what can happen when an immature, naive and commercial firm of architects are effectively given free roam of the city. I know many will disagree with these comments but im afraid i cannot sit and watch the sucking up to GM-AD that goes on day in day out on this forum.
 

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School for Scoundrels
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Have you disabled your spellchecker or is it the drink?................ you were saying??
 

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dE/dm
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First of all, welcome to the forum

I would like to draw your attention to the fact that this is a skyscraper forum, and therefore the members are inherently going to be more attracted to modern (or brash if you like) architecture such as radisson or spectrum house. As far as I'm concerned, the problem isn't the excessive support for GM & AD' plans but the lack of any input from people like you who are opposed to the designs. There were opportunities for you to comment on glasgow harbour II or the unicorn tower, but you didn't take them. That makes it especially hard to understand when you post this, weeks later moaning at the lack of criticism.
 

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Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, Youngin. I happen to like the proposals for Glasgow harbour. I am not just saying this to appease Alan and stop him from leaving the forum. Bewleys, Spectrum and the Radisson are spectacular and symbolise Glasgow is moving forward from copy-cat "quiet" architecture, to unique, loud and exciting architecture.
 

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youngin, youll notice though it worked both ways, aland and i both deleted comments we'd made about each other. simply good manners because we'd been quite rude to each other, when you sit back you look at things and realise "maybe i could have said that differently".
i DONT like glasgow harbour but i do like the sentinel - im not a big fan of all the gm+ad work, but i also believe when they are good they can be very good. like all busy practises they do a variety of work, some for more enlightened clients than others. glasgow harbour isnt a particularly enlightened example but that makes them no worse than any company. they are afterall out to make money, not just earn credibility.
architects though are not given a free roam of a city, they do what the developer, the man who is paying for the development wants them to do. at the end of the day if the developer doesnt like the architect's work he will drop them and go to another practise. im sure if architects were given a free reign then glasgow harbour would be a damn sight better than it is right now but they are trying to fit x number of flats into x sq m costing only x money and thats a challenge.
blame the developer, and blame the planning people for letting it through, not the architect. ive seen it happen many times though, the anger and frustration of an architect who has designed an amazing building only to have the client drop it because its too fancy or expensive and they want something cheap and bland. artistic credibility isnt something you can really run a business on except with a few choice clients and lets face it, glasgow and almost everywhere outside of the city of london lacks that kind of money where towers literally cost a billion pounds to build.
whilst they may have status in glasgow i dont hear of them much actually except in the context of glasgow. they are the latest thing, and in ten years time there'll be another latest thing practise. the question is whether they can move on from that to becoming internationally reknowned like grimshaw, wilkinson eyre and so on.
part of the reason there is so much gm+ad on this forum is they are actually posting here and not anonymously. their work is being discussed because of thisif more people posted stuff then im sure other practises would be discussed just as widely. id personally love to hear more about things coopar cromar are doing here - i know at least one of their people posts here too.
 

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Did'nt you know we're revered and reviled in equal measure, according to the Sunday Times, youngin ?

People seem to love or work or people hate it there's no half measures and that's fine by me, seriously. Our work and our ability as architects will be assessed over time. You know our buildings and think enough about them to post on a forum that's good enough for me, for the moment.

There are new buildings in Scotland that are over rated in my view, by architects that design the same building everytime and consequently have very little to say to me and about architecture in Scotland and equally about Scotland related to Europe and indeed the rest of the world. Who knows you could be one of them, but your opinion, like mine, is fair comment

I post our work because I can't post anyone else's really.......... can't think of any other high profile architect who does the same, can you? What people make of it is up to them but it's up front and on a public forum, people can write anything they like in response, critical or praising and I'll read it. If it's a good forum, so will a lot of people.

The situation with Glasgow Harbour is entirely different, as I'm sure you will agree at least on this point , it's a multi million pound development and a lot was at stake before planning was awarded. Our client specifically instructed that nothing be released to the press or the media which they are perfectly entitled to do ............... and here it was on a website that I took part in.

I had no other choice but to remove myself from it.

Do me a favour though, go to our exhibition of new work at the Lighthouse and also see 6000 miles, then tell me you still think our work has no depth or rigour
 

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MORI
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Gothic... you are the one of the administrators of this forum are you not?.. this is a suggestion and i hope i'm not being silly about it ..i'm sure that a lot of the designers and practices are not aware of this forum.. what are the posibilities of of contacting other companies and inviting them on to the forum personaly to contribute here of their work, i'm sure that this is a good meeting ground for all in this field ..i was not aware of this forum untill i stumbled upon it through the search engine last year and its been a really good source of information for the renewel of the surounding areas of Glasgow which is very exciting to those of us who are born and bred here and are proud of our city.. and alan not blowing your horn in any way but i feel you are a modest man and do not minipulate the forum in any way as suggested.. just becuase you have a passion to illustrate your work on here does not mean that people have to swing to your side to promote your work.. all work from any designer has to go through a rigorous method from city planners, the GH2 plans were looked at for nearly a year before decisions were made to give it a go ahead and i'm sure the planners would make them go back to the drawing board again and agian if they thought that GH2 was not a viable development..thanks for listening

Mo
 

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To be fair it should be interesting to get a different perspective on things.

Why do you not like GH2 or the Unicorn, youngin? You must have fairly strong reasons afterall!
 

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Urban Realm
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If you'd actually presented reasons for disliking the architecture that may have provided a hinge for further discussion. As is, the rambling monologue presented doesn't hold together at all well.

The city chambers are "brash", Kelvingrove is bold, central station is flamboyant, I fail to see the distinction nor the problem. New Gorbals is an entirely different kettle of fish to Glasgow Harbour. It's pleasant, a good job has been done but it remains a pale shadow of its former grandeur. The public artworks can't quite mask the cheap yellow brick estates, the walled, gated communities aren't ideal public realm either. Contrast that with the publicly accessible community down river. Best of luck selling the old high density = bad, low density = good line.

There's a ton of criticism on here. I've criticised Glasgow harbour phase 1, Jury's, Mizu, CHQ and Blackfriars till I'm blue in the face. If I haven't criticised gm + ad projects it's because I've had no justifiable grounds to do so.
 

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m_riaz, yes i am indeed one of the founders of ssc and whatnot. i have actually talked many people into posting ont hese forums (or at least reading them) who i have been in contact with over time. it would be wrong though, and bad manners to ask people do so if i dont know them already. id love to have more people come here and i do as ive said recommend it to people i know in the business.
plenty of people do post here under nomme de guerres, the thing is alan is the only one to do so openly really. you have people from coopar cromar and auckett posting here more discretely, people from glasgow regeneration agencies too doing the same thing. frankly though i dont caer whether people post anonymously or openly as long as they do post. i think though the likes of alan are leading this in a way, what we have here really is a bit of a viral pr campaign for his practise, just as the manchester forum has people from aedas architects and ian simpson posting on it.
 

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I think youngin's posting is fair comment, in truth, providing he/she is not a digruntled neighbour or a competing architect ( I am always a bit suspicious when on the "eve" of important planning decisions for the practice someone who has never posted before makes themselves known, sorry)

Anyway, it's gothics response that I find the most amusing.

Our practice has grown from six to thirty in less than seven years, every project we do is a conversation piece, good and bad. We have half a billion's worth of new build work in the office at present and are starting to work in North America , Ireland and in Italy, we're growing continually yet because the anal retentives down south hav't yet heard of us much, we're somehow only the latest thing.

Frankly that says more about their ignorance and yours frankly than our ability.

Post me in ten years time, if we're not one of the world's top practices I'll eat my calvin's............. without the HP and no side salad
 

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right now id describe ad+gm as the up and coming indie band, critically acclaimed and reasonably successful but with gold rather than multi platinum records waiting to have their real break through hit that will make them internationally famous, more franz ferdinand than coldplay. you certainly have the talent. i really hope you do get there, itd be nice if more of the worlds top practices were actually greatly talented as opposed to moderately so. sadly, for every grimshaw there's a siefert who i believe designed 480 office blocks around the world in the 60s and 70s, most of them were complete drivel. youre definitely talented and i hope you get through to that next level and do a grimshaw :)
this site by the way is 5 years old almost.
 

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I think that YOUNGIN has a reasonable point in terms of the forum but this should not be seen as a criticism of Alan Dunlop.

People queuing up a few weeks back to boast of the letters they were writing to the COUNCIL supporting one of Alan's projects seemed to almost but perhaps not quite border on the edge of sycophancy.

The trouble is not that Alan can come over as opionated, arrogant and boastful, no the trouble is that the regular contributers have settled into a cosy club in which Alan appears to have the greatest status. Indeed in one post he was described as the forum's master architect.

The remedy would be to have a greater number of other architects whether established or starting out taking part regularly. If the Pete McGurns the Sandy Coopers the David Pages the Jon Jewitts the John Forbes the Mark Baines took part i am sure Alan would be delighted and the forum could be fantastic.

How can that come about?


By the way I really like the Radisson both visually and in terms of using it as a customer. It has added a whole new dimension to the City. I do not know whether the developer should take the credit or the architect or whether it was a meeting of minds. I do not know if the construction came within budget and if there are ongong maintenance problems. I only know that I am uplifted everytime I see it.
 

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..............well I see us more akin to Berry Gordy and the beginings of the Motown Sound. We've had some success with Smokey Robinson, The Four Tops are beginning to break though, Marvin Gaye has just signed a new contract, a few people have heard of us out side Detroit and Diana Ross has just this second walked through the door.

Could be good?

Coldplay who the hell are they .....Chillies, REM and Springsteen , now yer cooking. Form always follows Function

I did say Murdomac that youngin was making a fair point......but those other guys you mentioned who the **** are they :)
 

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lol. good metaphor alan.

if people want to say alan is a master architect thats their own personal opinion, it can be easy to get starstruck by someone - thats not alans fault, for most people places like this are the only real chance they get to discuss things with an architect and if youre a fan of the work of someone like that then its no different to any other fandom thing where people go "oh wow, youre so and so!". all thats missing right now is some balance and thats the fault of alans competitors for not posting here and only lurking. *hint hint*

the master architect on skyscrapercity id say is probably ken yeang. yes, he does post and read ssc when he gets the time.
 

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Haha it was me who branded Alan the "Master Architect".

If you actually look at the context of the post, you people will actually realise that it was a bit of tongue and cheek.

Not that your not a stunning architect, Alan, because I genuinely do respect and admire your work, but I was only over-dramatising the regular posters status whilst the forum went quiet a week back in a somewhat half-baked attempt to get everyone posting again....

I mean come on! With names like "Forum Champion" and "Knowledgable Master" did you think I was being serious?


Duh.....
 
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