PLANS to merge two shops in Finnieston to form a cafe have been blocked by city planners.

The Steamie Coffee Roasters proposal to expand their offering on Argyle Street was declined this week. The application was part retrospective. 

The firm wanted to change the use of their existing coffee shop and another retail unit to form a cafe serving hot meals. They also wanted to make shopfront alternations and erect a flue to the rear of the property.

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City planners declined the proposal citing three reasons for the decision. The proposal was not considered to be in accordance with the development plan. No evidence was submitted to show that the properties were long term vacant units and that an appropriate marketing exercise had been carried out over a 12 month period that had been unsuccessful in attracting class 1 operators. It was argued that the change of use does not help maintain the retail function in the area. 

Planners also said: "The proposed shopfront alterations have not been designed to take account of the age, style and design features of the building which they are a part and the area where they are located, and would incongruously contrast with the glazed shopfronts of other commercial properties in the area."

One written objection had also been received for the application which also argued that the proposed shop front alterations would result in a very domestic appearance and would be extremely out of character for a shopfront street elevation in a conservation area.