The key objective of Glasgow City Council was to create an attractive and well-connected neighbourhood with a distinctive and vibrant Barras Market at its core through a phased programme of community investment, physical improvements and adaptive reuse projects. Most projects are now complete with work still continuing on public realm improvements. A range of significant changes have taken place with the aim of creating a sense of place and improving access to quality open space for businesses and the community. These include works to Bain Square, a key civic square linking Calton to the Barras Market and the City Centre; enabling works to create a temporary urban park (Barrowland Park), the development of new creative and cultural assets through the Underutilised Floorspace Development Grant Scheme and a range of local environmental enhancements.
The Barras Market is a large street and indoor weekend market in the East End of Glasgow. Despite several strong local independent retailers and a nascent creative community, the area suffered from a wide variety of interlinked social, economic and environmental problems. The wider Calton Barras area formed part of the key route between the City Centre and the East End and in particular a key route to the Commonwealth Games in 2014, the World Gymnastic Championships in 2015 and the ongoing programme of major development led by Clyde Gateway. The continued challenges and opportunities prevalent in the area were therefore given added impetus to be addressed for the benefit of the city as a whole in order to bring life and improve the appearance of the area and to create jobs and deliver a sustainable future.
The renaissance of the Calton Barras area is an exemplar of what can be achieved by considered and ambitious planning and the identification of, and the targeting of funding at, a variety of innovative projects. The development of the Calton Barras Action Plan and the delivery of subsequent projects was achieved in partnership between the Local Authority, local stakeholders, businesses and organisations with the aim of revitalising the iconic market area, whilst seeking to respect its rich heritage and proud history. The initial investment has also been a catalyst for ongoing and exciting new investment in this part of Glasgow.
Michael Ward, Principal Planner - Glasgow City Council
The Calton Barras Action Plan is led by Development and Regeneration Services at Glasgow City Council who have resourced the multi-million pound programme of work over the last eight years in consultation with local residents, businesses and other stakeholders. The programme is still ongoing as part of the Glasgow City Region City Deal.
Header Image - The Backyard, Barras Arts & Design Centre, Photo courtesy of Barras Art & Design Centre