A former Marks & Spencer store is to be demolished in Sauchiehall Street to make way for student homes and shops to be built.

The bid has sparked four letters of support and 12 objections with people worried about the height of the replacement building, which partly rises to 17 storeys.

The facade of the previous M&S unlisted 1935 building, which has been empty since April 2022 is to be retained.

Glasgow Times:

The ground floor is to house shops and other uses fronting on to Sauchiehall Street. Proposals include a new public area to bring back the “historic Wellington Arcade that linked Sauchiehall Street with Renfrew Street.”

There are hopes that the 634 bed building would also be used for short stay accommodation outside academic term time according to planning documents.

The building will be five and eight storeys facing onto Sauchiehall Street. On Renfrew Street the property would reach 11 and 18 storeys.

Glasgow Times:

Glasgow Times:

Fusion Glasgow Devco Ltd has applied for planning permission for the demolition and redevelopment of the site.

Council planners are recommending approval but it will be up to councillors sitting on the planning applications committee to decide next week.

An objection from Garnethill Community council said the area as part of the city, Anderston and Yorkhill ward, has the biggest majority of purpose built student accommodation in Glasgow.

The objection raised concerns about the “height and scale of the proposed development which would significantly exceed most existing buildings in Sauchiehall Street.”

Glasgow Times:

Glasgow Times:

The community council also said the over concentration of student accommodation in small pockets of the city has a negative impact on supporting “mixed and balanced communities.”

Other objectors include Councillor Angus Millar and MSP Kaukab Stewart MSP.

The Architectural Heritage Society of Scotland said the height of the Renfrew Street block will have a “detrimental effect on Sauchiehall Street.”

Supporters include MSP Paul Sweeney, Glasgow Caledonian University, and the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.

Supporting the bid, the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, said the development will give a “much needed boost” to the Sauchiehall and Renfrew Street amenity with economic benefits as well as “build capacity for student accommodation.”

A planning statement lodged on behalf of the applicant said: “Overall, the proposals will deliver much needed high quality purpose built student accommodation in Glasgow City Centre and will contribute towards attracting new students to the city, while helping to sustain current levels. The wider proposals will also bring substantial economic benefits to Glasgow city centre and the wider city while helping to facilitate increased city centre living and supporting the growth of the universities.”

Councillors at next week’s meeting are also to consider a  Demolition in a Conservation Area application as part of the bid.

There are to be 355 parking spaces for bicycles and no spaces for cars.