FEARS have been raised that a stalled £400 million supermall project will never go ahead.

The Evening Times reported earlier this month how developers halted their scheme to double the size of Buchanan Galleries in Glasgow - after controversially securing tens of millions of pounds in backing from the city council.

Now opposition politicians have said they believe the scheme may be stopped for good.

Sandra White, SNP MSP for Glasgow Kelvin, said: “It raises a lot of concerns.

“The fear it raises is that the project won’t go ahead at all.

“It raises serious alarm bells, nobody has been told apart from a press release the developers Land Securities sent out, nobody has been told what the reason is.

“The project stalling makes you think is it actually going to go ahead?

“I haven’t been contacted by Buchannan Galleries or anyone else, normally they would keep in touch if there would be a delay.

“Having looked at their comments I’m concerned there is something we don’t know about."

Plans for the Galleries extension included a range of regeneration projects, including plans to knock down the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall steps.

The company behind the scheme, Land Securities, said it had concerns its work would clash with the delivery of the Edinburgh Glasgow Improvement Programme [EGIP], scheduled to be underway at the same time.

But Ms White said the clash of the two projects was fully discussed with Land Securities.

She added: “The reason they gave for doing the works altogether is so it wouldn’t be so much disruption.

“We spoke about the car park and the disruption and they said it would be better to go ahead with the two plans at the one time rather than it continuing disruption later on.

“It makes you think if there’s something wrong with the EGIP programme. They need to let us know why this is happening.

“We are raising the concerns and I will be contacting the board at Buchanan Galleries to find out what exactly what is going on.

“I’ll be writing to them to clarify the situation.”

The Galleries super-mall is part of a Tax Incremental Funding (TIF) scheme sought by Glasgow City Council and supported by Holyrood.

It was planned that the council raise a total of more than £80m against future extra additional business rates from the super-mall.

Glasgow City Council has already borrowed £9m under TIF to pay for proposed work to George Square and work to Cathedral Street Bridge.

Councillor Nina Baker, of the Green Party, said: "The thing that concerns me most is the TIF funding and the impact that will have. We have already spent £9m.

"I think that is the biggest problem because we now don't have the expected increase in business rates that would have generated the money to pay back what we have borrowed.

"Shops are shutting all around Buchanan Galleries already - HMV, for example, is still lying empty. How do we generate business rates on empty shops?

"It looks very much to me as though Gordon Matheson's grand project may not happen."

The mall extension had been scheduled to open for Christmas 2017.

VisitScotland's tourist information office on Buchanan Street has already had to relocate because its building was subject to a compulsory purchase order ahead of the planned works.

SNP Leader of the Opposition Councillor Susan Aitken said: “Clearly this is a matter of great concern.

“I have asked questions of top officials in the Council to establish what was known, when it was known and by whom it was known.

“This delay could provide an opportunity for those involved in the project to rethink the proposals to demolish the Buchanan Steps.

“I hope that, whatever the issues are that have caused this delay, the project gets back on track as quickly as possible.”

When asked to comment by the Evening Times, Land Securities resent the generic comment it had issued earlier this month when news of the delay first emerged.