GLASGOW’S beautiful, grand and intricate buildings is one of the reasons I love this city so much.  

But today, we face an urgent crisis as our beloved city’s architectural heritage crumbles and areas like Bridge Street make headlines.

The India Buildings’ demolition is a glaring symbol of the failure of the SNP Scottish Government and Glasgow City Council to act, despite years of advocacy by residents, campaigners and my repeated calls to the council for the use of statutory powers including compulsory purchase to revive neglected buildings.

The high density of empty, deteriorating, listed buildings in Bridge Street is not just a matter of lost heritage but of lost opportunities that will never return. Last year, a distressing report illuminated the grim exploitation of our youth, with teenagers as young as 15 forced into drug peddling in the shadows of these crumbling structures.

This is not the Glasgow we aspire to be. Our city’s fabric is tearing from the edges, and with each building that falls, a piece of our story disintegrates.

Our appeals to save Glasgow’s historical buildings have been met with red tape at every turn and it is now time to cast aside the cloak of complacency and address the pressing needs of our communities.

To the multinational corporations, entrepreneurs and successful businessmen who have flourished with Glasgow, I say this: Glasgow needs you now.

We urge you to return your success to the city that fostered it. Invest in our buildings, bring your expertise and join us in preventing the point of no return for our city’s heritage.

The challenges we face require a unified front.  

That is why I have convened a cross-party meeting involving local councillors from the Govan and Southside Central wards alongside relevant partners to forge focused, cost-effective and urgent sustainable solutions to regenerate Bridge Street and the surrounding area.  

The objective is clear: rescue our heritage, support our youth, regenerate and build a sustainable future for Glasgow.

There are more than 2600 empty homes in Glasgow. Though I welcome the progress which seems to have been made in bringing some homes into use, given the housing emergency, consideration should be given to building on this progress more rapidly and trying to accelerate progress towards the targets.

Compulsory Sales Orders (CSOs) could resolve up to 50% of the problem concerning empty properties in Glasgow.

Yet, the SNP Scottish Government’s delay in implementing CSOs is both inexcusable and indefensible.

If declaration of a housing emergency by Glasgow City Council is to be more than mere rhetoric, it is imperative the council publicly demands immediate action on CSOs. Enough time has been wasted.

It’s a matter of public urgency that all levels of government pool their efforts and prioritise Glasgow over constitutional bickering.

In the spirit of those giants upon whose shoulders we stand, let us save Glasgow from a point of no return. It is not just our responsibility but our duty to ensure that the tale of Glasgow continues to be one of growth, resilience and renewal.

For the sake of our heritage, for the sake of our future, we must save Glasgow.