Plans for new Scottish Opera HQ with 700 student flats promises to regenerate Glasgow canal area

Plans have been submitted.
-Credit: (Image: Page\Park)


Scottish Opera has submitted plans for a new Glasgow canal HQ which would bring its existing premises together as part of a regeneration of the area.

The company is proposing a new mixed-use development on the brownfield site which would include student housing, production studios, ‘state of the art’ rehearsal and performance spaces and teaching facilities.

Alongside this would be music practice rooms for hire, a large costume store for theatre, TV and film productions, a music library, and a rooftop café with panoramic views over the city. A 'hidden' garden would sit next to the café and be accessible to members of the public via bridge links from the canal towpath.

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If approved, a 700 bed student development would sit on either side of the site. Scottish Opera has already sold to a developer to held fund the scheme.

The land was acquired by Scottish Opera in 2020 after sitting unused since around 1980. Previous plans for the site have included student housing - which was rejected by Glasgow City Council.

What the building could look like if approved
What the building could look like if approved -Credit:Page\Park

The plans, submitted by Page\Park, would sit on Edington Street in the Port Dundas area of the city on the stretch of the Forth and Clyde Canal known as New Rotterdam Wharf. The site would comprise two separate but connected areas of land which would involve "rationalising and consolidating three of its current, scattered five premises on to one site".

Planning documents for the new site explain: “In 1999, Scottish Opera moved their production operations into a new custom-built Production Studio on Edington Street, on the site of the former power station.

Plans have been submitted
Plans have been submitted -Credit:Page\Park

“It contains set and prop building facilities, the costume department, and rehearsal spaces for productions. The building is designed and specified to meet Scottish Opera’s technical requirements, and external service yards allow direct access for lorries and production vehicles.

“Remnants of the Power Station boundary wall are visible on Edington Street, and notably at the service entrance to the Scottish Opera Production Studios on Corn Street. This historic entry point has been in constant use since at least 1807."

The site
The site -Credit: Page\Park

It adds: "The development strategy that has evolved for the site is to place the proposed new Scottish Opera rehearsal and support building between the existing Edington Street production studios and the canal towpath.

“A core circulation route through this new building will link a new canal-side entrance down into the existing production studio and to the existing entrance on Edington Street.

“To the north and south, two student accommodation blocks are proposed, with stepping scales, effectively ‘book-ending’ the site and providing activated frontages to all four corners of the plot.

The area.
The area. -Credit: Page\Park

“Pended access under each block provides access to two internal courtyards providing service and visitor access to the Scottish Opera building.

“New broad feature steps at both the north and south ends of the site provide connection between the ends of Sawmillfield St and Corn Street, connecting up to the canal edge.

“At the heart of the proposed development is the desire to provide better, more usable public space which can help to activate this part of the city — especially at this section of the Forth and Clyde canal.

“Positive place making is integral to the proposed development, and the shaping of each massing block has been driven by how we can create great public space in between each block and at the key corners of the site.

“These public spaces are being developed to allow for a wide variety of uses and activities – by Scottish Opera, students, local residents and members of the public.”

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