A FORMER business park in the south of the city could be transformed into a new neighbourhood with more than 150 homes.

The site in Cathcart on the banks of the White Cart river is presently the base for ScottishPower Renewables which previously employed 1500 people over seven divisions.

But it is now surplus to requirements as a result of the massive new headquarters being built for ScottishPower on India Street at Charing Cross.

As a result, the city council's planning committee has agreed to grant planning permission in principle for a new housing development on the site which is located between the pedestrian bridge at Sinclair Drive and the vehicle bridge to Spean Street.

It contains a number of existing office, industrial and commercial buildings including the main seven story office which is next to the Category B listed Cathcart House. The western area of the site contains the main car park.

The planning application was lodged with the city council to establish the principle of houses being built on the industrial park.

That could result in a new neighbourhood in the area with 158 houses made up of semi-detached and terraced blocks with landscaping and parking.

A report to councillors says: "Due to the nature of the application, the proposals have not been produced to a finalised level of detail and may be subject to change through design refinement in the future."

At present Cathcart house is being marketed for commercial use but the report says if no employment use can be secured, the listed building may be converted into flats.

The report from planners says: "The site is considered to be of a suitable location for residential development and is sufficiently served by access to public transport as well as the roads and path network.

"It is considered the proposed redevelopment of the site will afford greater opportunity for the use of remaining and proposed open space as presently its open space is not publicly accessible.

"On its redevelopment, large areas of the site will become publicly accessible, including those areas of open space along the north boundary at the bank with the White Cart Water.

The plan for planning permission in principle attracted only two objections from the public.

A ScottishPower spokesperson said: "We have made excellent progress on our new headquarters since the first of three giant cranes appeared on site in September last year.

"The exterior concrete framework has now passed the halfway point reaching seven stories high and a new access road from Elmbank Street, which will give direct access to two underground carparks, is now also complete.

"We expect our teams will be able to start moving in during the spring of 2016."