Plans have been lodged for for a ‘high quality’ apartment hotel at the site of a major fire on one of Glasgow’s main shopping districts.
Developers are seeking permission to redevelopment the former Greaves store at 82 Sauchiehall Street, next to a vacant site where two neighbouring buildings were demolished after a fire at Victoria’s nightclub in 2018.
Around 120 firefighters battled to contain the blaze that almost engulfed the historic neighbouring Pavillion theatre.
The four-storey block has been vacant for more than four years and sits within the central conservation area.
The planning statement states that the change of use from retail to leisure and hospitality is in response to the challenging conditions experienced by the retail sector in city centres.
The development will create “generous” hotel sized rooms with cooking facilities, primarily within the existing building but additional space will be created with a fifth floor.
The application, which has been submitted by Mr Joe Johal and Wellwood Leslie Architects, seeks to “secure the long-term future of the Grade B listed building” which is said to be in a poor state of repair.
The proposal aims to preserve the historic fabric of the building with a “complete regeneration” of the interior space.
The plans note that the area has a wide mix of architecture from classical to 19th century, Art Deco and modernist.
The developers say the new hotel will enhance the character and amenity of the area that was badly affected by the fire in terms of its retail offering and visual appearance.
Plans have separately been lodged to re-develop the former BHS site while the area will also benefit from the same changes that have transformed the lower half of Sauchiehall Street with cycle lanes and landscaping.
An investigation found that the fire in 2018 was ‘probably’ caused by an electrical fault.
A number of businesses were impacted after a blaze broke out in the ceiling void above Holland and Barrett at 94 Sauchiehall Street.
A report, obtained by Freedom of Information request by the Herald’s sister title The Glasgow Times, detailed the events that led to the demolition of seven businesses, a hotel development and left a popular pub out of action for more than a year.
An assistant manager of Holland and Barrett was the first to call the fire service to report smoke coming from the roof of the ground floor shop around 8am.
She told fire investigations officers that she was in the office when she heard a loud “pop” in the ceiling void and could then smell smoke.
Fire crews forced entry to Victoria’s nightclub on the first floor, where they identified large volumes of smoke coming from an area below the DJ booth.
Efforts to bring it under control and dampen the building went on for five days – before a stop message was finally transmitted on April 27.
Part of Sauchiehall Street remained cordoned off until a complete demolition of the block from 92 to 106 eventually took place in June.