Protests mount over #muchtoobig plans for ‘eyesore’ apart-hotel on Fergus Drive

By Ian Marland at

A preservation group is backing residents in their fight against an “ugly monstrosity” in the heart of Glasgow’s West End.

Developers want to build a seven-storey apart-hotel in Fergus Drive, North Kelvinside.

Planning permission is being sought for 77 serviced apartments and a ground floor cafe on Fergus Drive, off Queen Margaret Drive.

Victorian: Objectors say the design and size of the building is out of keeping with the conservation area.

But Friends of Glasgow West say the plans, if approved, would “severely detract from the unique local character of the Victorian tenements and villas of North Kelvin”.

Ann Laird, convenor, said her group fully supported the “well-organised local community campaign”.

“The current 127 Fergus Drive Planning Application for a 77-Unit short-stay ‘Apart-Hotel’ would create an oversized and ugly monstrosity just off Queen Margaret Drive,” said Ann.

“The proposals pay scant regard to the obvious requirements of high quality design, scale and materials appropriate to this location in Glasgow West Conservation Area, and if built, would severely detract from the unique local character of the Victorian tenements and villas of North Kelvin.

Objectons: Local residents are taking their fight to city planners.

“Daytime and overnight parking here are currently uncontrolled, and indeed already bursting at the seams.”

Residents are organising meetings, petitions and enlisting politicians in their fight.

Objectors say the building is far too big and would ruin the local setting. They are using the #muchtoobig hashtag in their campaign.

They say cars generated by hundreds of temporary residents using the complex would create a parking nightmare.

Meeting: Residents will be updated on the campaign against the plans.

CMM Architects are involved in drawing up plans which provide short stay accommodation for up to 90 days.

The architects are targeting business, academic and short stay guests and believe the plans will “augment” tourism.

But residents have concerns about the name of the applicant, which is still shown as ‘Poppit Properties Limited’, a company dissolved in 2016.

A petition on change.org currently has more than 260 names signed up.

Claim: Developers say the apart-hotel would be a boost to tourism in the West End.

Residents will be updated on their campaign at a meeting next week at St Charles Community Rooms.

Local parliamentary candidate Patrick Grady has been tweeting his opposition to the plans after meeting residents.

Glasgow West End Today has contacted CMM Architects and is waiting for a comment.

Robert Carrick, principal director of CMM Architects, was recently quoted in the Evening Times.

He told the paper: “We are aware of the concerns and we want to have further dialogue with planner to try to allay some of the concerns.

Location: The plans are in the heart of the West End.

“A reduction in height would impact on the viability and this is something we can discuss with our client.

“We are working very hard to get this site developed. It’s a difficult site to develop in a viable way.

“We believe it will augment tourist demand for the area.”

Residents have until June 9 to raise their objections to Glasgow City Council.