City centre residents are working to garner support for a bid to turn an undeveloped space into a community park. 

Members of the Merchant City and Trongate communities have formed Merchant City Park Ltd, and hope to utilise the Community Empowerment (Scotland) 2015 Act to acquire the land for use as a park in the heart of the city.   

The site at 69-97 Ingram Street is bordered by Candleriggs, Ingram Street and Albion Street and the gable wall of City Halls.

It was previously owned by Glasgow City Council, and leased to National Car Parks on a month to month basis.

The site was sold on to GCC's ALEO City Property (Glasgow) LLP, so is no longer subject to the enabling legislation.

Known for its internationally recognised mural by artist Smug, commissioned in 2013 for the Commonwealth Games, the piece was created during the Merchant City festival and depicts the four seasons, including a nod to the infamous photobombing squirrel.

Peter Hayman, director of Merchant City Park Ltd., told The Glasgow Times: “We need this space now more than ever.

“Creating a park on the site, we want to develop a green space.

“It will bring huge health benefits for the Community whilst preserving the existing trees and saving the Mural. 

“We also believe it will become mutually beneficial for the entertainment and tourism economy in the area. We have been working on our business plan before the pandemic, but when lockdown ends we will need a space to breathe and recover more than ever.

“The city does not need any more hotels or car parks.

“That space has lain unused for more than 40 years and it cannot help but seem wasted.”

Peter is now calling on others in the area to assist with the bid for the land to Glasgow City Property, the current owners of the site.

He said: “We need professional help going forward.

“Be it for fundraising, architects or surveyors, if they would like to join the company we will have a strong proposal for the closing date on the 28th of August.

“We have to raise the funds ourselves in these difficult times. We feel a bit pushed down that road.

“But the returns will be endless.”

Read more about Merchant City Plans here.