Today we announced plans to demolish Glasgow Buchanan Galleries as part of the transformation of the city centre. 

The proposal is to “replace” the shopping mall with a multi-purpose shopping, residential and office quarter.

It would see new public squares created, new streets with street-level entry to shops and Buchanan Street opened up through to Killermont Street and Buchanan Bus Station.

The Royal Concert Hall would not be affected by any plan.

Here we look back at the shopping mall's history.

IT WAS hailed as the future of retail, when it opened in the spring of 1999, during Glasgow’s reign as City of Architecture and Design.

Buchanan Galleries would “change the face of shopping”, according to its first-ever manager, Hamish Millar.

In January 1996, after almost a decade of speculation, a date was finally set for work to begin on the development.

On February 5 that year, construction began on Scotland's largest city-centre shopping scheme – at 600,000 sq ft, it was equivalent in size to nearly six Hampden Parks.

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Half of the site was to be taken up by the John Lewis flagship store, and the plans included up to 80 shop units and parking for 2000 cars.

In 1997, it was announced Habitat would be the second-largest tenant, with a store more than twice the area of its original home on Bothwell Street and the company’s biggest in Europe, and Next would open its fifth city store – and its largest in Scotland – in the Galleries. Boots and H&M were quick to follow.

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Pictures from the 2012 extension

On November 27, 1997, John Lewis started fitting out its store and then Glasgow Lord Provost Pat Lally predicted a new era for the city, in which Buchanan Street would become a “European grand street – internationally famous.”

He added: ''I firmly predict that by 1999 Glasgow will be the UK city of shopping.”

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In February 1999, Hamish Millar, formerly assistant manager at nearby St Enoch's Shopping Centre and ex-manager of Oakmall in Greenock, was announced as general manager.

He said he had “no doubt” the centre would “change the face of shopping in Glasgow and Central Scotland".

READ MOREEight weird and wonderful things to happen at the Buchanan Galleries

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Designed by local architects Jenkins and Marr to complement the concert hall and other nearby buildings with its sandstone exterior, steel and glass bridge over Cathedral Street, and large atriums linked by a glazed roof, the centre quickly became a popular landmark at the point where Buchanan Street and Sauchiehall Street meet.

The mall helped cement Glasgow’s reputation as THE fashion retail destination, second only to London’s Oxford Street, and it was at the heart of the city’s Style Mile.

Around 85 per cent of the units opened their doors on March 31, 1999 and a staggering quarter of a million people came to visit. Lord Provost Pat Lally officially opened it the following day by unveiling a commemorative plaque and slicing a Buchanan Galleries gateau.

Original tenants included Lakeland, Victoria’s Secret, Hollister, La Senza, Gymboree, Mango, Oasis and Thorntons. A 300-seat food court with Burger King, Jacket Junction, Cafe Ritazza and Costa Coffee was planned.

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In July 1999, the Queen visited Glasgow and popped into Buchanan Galleries for a visit. On her tour, she went to Thorntons Chocolate Shop, where she met manager Kirsty Wandrum and was presented with a chocolate lace casket. She also presented the Buchanan Galleries' Shopmobility scheme with a powered scooter worth £2500 and unveiled a plaque marking her visit.

It was estimated as many as 500,000 shoppers per week would come through the doors of Buchanan Galleries. Within the first six months, it had welcomed more than 10 million. It was the first Scottish centre to feature in the UK's Top 20 list.