MET TOWER TRANSFORMATION PLANS UNVEILED
Detailed plans for the redevelopment of the Met Tower in Glasgow have been unveiled by Bruntwood SciTech.
The proposals include both its refurbishment vision for the former City of Glasgow College building, as well as specifications for a new, adjoining tower, which collectively should create a new technology and digital hub in the city centre.
The £60m investment will see Bruntwood SciTech bring the current Grade B-listed building back into use by summer 2025, following a 10-year period of vacancy. The adjacent building is set to open the following year.
Combined, the two towers will have more than 200,000 sq ft of serviced and leased office space to help with the growth of the city’s tech sector. Enabling works on the site are already underway, with work on Met Tower expected to commence this winter, subject to planning permission.
Bruntwood SciTech, a joint venture between Bruntwood and Legal & General, has built a reputation for supporting the creation of innovation districts across the UK. The plans for Met Tower aim to turn it into a commercial hub where tech and university spin-outs, start-ups, scale-ups and high-profile tech businesses can co-locate.
Businesses locating to the new cluster will gain access to Bruntwood SciTech’s UK-wide network of innovation districts, enabling them to collaborate with a 500-strong community of tech and science businesses, as well as specialist support through its Innovation Services team, which provides access to STEM talent, new markets, finance support and professional services advice.
The new building is hoped to achieve net zero carbon in construction and with both buildings achieving net zero operation in their shared spaces, and development activity at Met Tower expected to retain as much of the building’s existing fabric as possible, reducing the embedded carbon impact of the re-development. The proposals also include carefully selected materials to reduce the environmental impact of the building, along with vertical fins for solar shading.
The scheme outlines how the existing 110,000 sq ft, 14-storey building will be redeveloped to offer two to 40-person serviced offices and larger leased office space, accompanied with multiple meeting rooms including a 16 person boardroom, a wellness and treatment room, cafe and multi-faith room.
The Met Tower’s recognisable ‘upside down boat’ roof structure will be retained and turned into a 60-person lounge and double height event space with floor to ceiling windows and an ‘innovation hub’.
The leased space available on the first floor will have its own private entrance onto a new plaza space, whilst the 13th floor will have a private staircase directly into the lounge and event space above.
The 95,000 sq ft, new 10-storey tower will offer medium to large office spaces, along with a breakout space opening out into the new plaza, cafe, a secondary retail space and a roof terrace.
Both buildings will be interconnected by a double height atrium which will the provide wellbeing and leisure facilities, including a workout studio and lounge, showers, changing facilities and a drying room, as well as an internal cycle store with repair stations.
Pete Crowther, property director of Bruntwood SciTech, said: “Met Tower is the perfect location to build a new tech and digital cluster in Glasgow – not only is it located mere 50m from Queen Street Station, it’s in the heart of the Glasgow City Innovation District, surrounded by two exceptional universities and the College, where future talent and some of the most exciting university spin-outs in Scotland and all of the UK can be found.”
He added: “We’re delighted to reach this milestone and unveil our vision for Met Tower and the new building, where there will be world-class spaces available for all sizes of tech and digital business, whether you’re a start-up or a global household name, all with the same access to a host of standout facilities and amenities.”
As the Met Tower project develops, Bruntwood SciTech will be looking to recruit a locally based team in Glasgow. Local firms have already been appointed to work on the redevelopment, including Cooper Cromar, Woolgar Hunter, Atelier Ten, Savills, Ryden and Thomas & Adamson.
Glasgow joins Bruntwood SciTech’s network of innovation districts that includes locations in Birmingham, Cambridge, Greater Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool.
Joint venture partner Legal & General has also already forward-funded 324 build-to-rent apartments within Glasgow’s new Buchanan Wharf waterside regeneration area and a new 187,000 sq ft hub for the UK civil service at Atlantic Square on Argyll Street.