Attended by: Tam Coyle (Chair), Ward Councillor Philip Braat, Gary Atkinson, Niall McColl, Colin McKay, Eileen Mills, Scott Thornton, Ros Wardley-Smith, AC, MD, TD, DH, GM, EW, Shahid Ali (Tontine project), Mark Bell (Tontine project); Police Scotland – Sergeant Rob Wilson.
By video link: David Cowan
Tam welcomed everyone to the meeting.
Apologies were received from Depute Lord Provost Christy Mearns and Councillor Angus Millar.
2. MINUTES OF MEETING HELD ON 29 AUGUST
Proposed by Tam, seconded by Niall. Approved.
3. PRESENTATION ON RE-DEVELOPMENT OF THE TONTINE BUILDINGS
Shahid and Mark explained outline proposals for the mixed use project between Bell Street and Trongate which are still at the ‘aspirational’ stage. The aim was to create spaces where people would like to work, visit and enjoy food, drink and recreation. There would be an outer commercial (retail) ring with leisure facilities in the inner courtyard.
A planning application would be submitted in late October. Mark was asked to provide copies of the slide for publication on the Community Council’s Website but said he would have to edit them to bring them up-to-date.,
4. POLICE REPORT
Sergeant Wilson said anti-drug patrols had been carried out in the MCTCC area,, including Clyde-side, with good recovery of substances, partly thanks to good intelligence gathering.
A total of 92 crimes had been recorded in the last monthly period, with 30 detections over 28 days. Many of these were drugs-related.
Engagements with buskers were continuing in the ‘Golden Z’ area.
Asked about the reported attack by a masked gang on the Euro Hostel on Clyde Street on 21 September, he said this was a ‘spontaneous’ confrontation between Rangers football bans and supporters of Spanish Club Real Betis following a Europa League match. Scott asked if police had been taken unawares.
The meeting was given details of Calton Community Council’s special public meeting on 28 September about the proposed ‘Safe Consumption Centre’ for hard drug users.
Sergeant Wilson said this could cut drug misuse in the neighbourhood. Police tended to follow a public health approach. Prosecution was a matter for the courts. Police would continue to do their normal job.
Niall advised the factor at Old Sheriff Court had instructed gates to be installed to prevent drug abuse taking place in the building’s moat. A stranger had roamed one of the floors, knocking at doors and requesting money, and had to be escorted off the premises. Sergeant Wilson said incidents like this should be reported to police who had increased patrols, including by plainclothed officers, in the area.
David thanked police for swift arrests and confiscation of contraband from half a dozen suspects in King Street.
EW also congratulated police for actions which had reduced, however belatedly, drug issues in Goosedubs Lane. Sergeant Wilson said police had asked the factor for access to EW’s apartment building without going through the factor. Shrubbery, which had been used as camouflage, was being trimmed back.
5. LOW EMISSION ZONE
Tam said this was causing serious problems with tradesmen and taxi drivers entering the city centre.
Gary asked for an update from Councillor Braat regarding Council reaction to the high level of enforcement and comments from businesses and residents as well as the proposals for re-investment of funds collected (reported to be c £600k so far). A TION: Councillor Braat committed to investigate and advise.
Councillor Braat said he had complained to the Roads Department about short notice of Temporary Traffic Regulation orders which meant some streets in the MCTCC area would be closed from 2 October for more than a week.
Several members complained about the lack of notice and signage about
closure of roads due to the Great Scottish Run on 30 September and 1 October. ACTION: Councillor Braat committed to contact Glasgow Life.
Councillors Braat and Millar had met Police Inspector Watters and representatives of food delivery companies online to discuss the use of e-bikes in view of various dangerous practices including going through red lights and riding on pavements. This was happening throughout the city centre.
Registration, licensing and identification of offenders was difficult because of the employment status of riders who were often hired as freelances and worked for different companies. Bikes were sometimes shared among riders.
GM said the problems had been known in the USA more than a decade ago. Why had it taken the authorities here so long to confront them?
TD said e-bikes should be reclassified as motor bikes. Were delivery companies leasing bikes illegally?
Colin said lithium batteries which powered e-bikes were potentially dangerous.
Sergeant Wilson said serious incidents should be reported to police, if possible noting the time and place. Delivery companies could then try to identify the culprit.
Ros said the manager at Sapporo Teppanyaki had written to Glasgow City Council that restaurant customers often risked injury due to cars taking the corner of Ingram/Hight Street too tight. Cars had crashed into the side of their building following a collision at the traffic lights. The restaurant has requested a barrier on the pavement corner. This had been highlighted to Ward Councillors.
She reported that the Spitfire cafe premises on the corner of Ingram Street and Candleriggs had reported frequent flooding due to local road sewer/drain infrastructure being overwhelmed by high rainfall. It had asked Glasgow Council for the drains to be unblocked/cleaned. Bar 91 had also been flooded. ACTION: Community Councillors to visit with Councillor Millar on area walkabout on 28 September.
Agreed to invite Fiona Campbell, GCC’s Senior Spatial Planner, to make a presentation to the November meeting, focusing on ‘Golden Z’ developments in the MCTCC area. ACTION: Scott
Scott noted that the objections deadline for the Dominus project for Purpose Built Student Accommodation in Osborne Street was 6 October. He felt the Community Council was ‘swimming against the tide’ of a planned substantial increase in student accommodation.
In answer to a question from EW Tam said plans for redevelopment of the King Street car park had still not reached the planning application stage but it seemed there was an intention to turn that area into many blocks 18 storeys or so high.
Eileen reported on the hearing into the Scottish Government’s ‘calling in’ of the planning application for 109 apartments on the NCP car park in Ingram Street. A separate but related issue had arisen concerning airconditioning units which seemed to have been installed on the roof of the City Halls without Glasgow Life receiving planning permission.
Scott said the SG Reporter had mentioned during her site visit that she would not be writing her report until mid-October and it could be several months after that until Ministers announced their decision.
DH said the developers’ promise to protect the ‘Other Glasgow Residents’ mural ‘could be tricky’ during construction of a 7 storey building.
Tam said the Brutte en Compadre cafe was keen to have a mural erected on its wall but they didn’t own the building.
As MCTCC’s representative on the GCC Licensing Forum Gary advised he had reviewed the extensive consultation documents relating to the proposed updating of the Licensing Policy Document and Overprovision.
He reminded the meeting of discussions at a previous MCTCC meeting relating to a proposal to introduce provision for licensed premises to extend their ‘Terminal Hour’ from midnight to 1 am. This was the only contentious item which might impact residents in our area. However, this extension would not be automatic and premises would have to apply. Any premises with an adverse history/current issues or problems regarding poor management would not be granted the extra hour.
The full Statement is available online. Any comments to be given to Gary before the next Mid-Monthly meeting as the proposed documents will be presented to Glasgow City Council on 6 November. ACTION: All Community Councillors
Tam said he met Mairi Miller of GCC about the occasional licences granted to Merchant City Festival Village. This followed complaints from a resident about excessive noise. The Village was now closed for the season. He would arrange to meet the developer, Drum, to find out what was planned for the corner of Candleriggs and Wilson Street (Current Festival Village site). ACTION: Tam
9. GRANT GIVING SCHEME
Niall reported on MCTCC sub-committee’s recommendations on the four applications which had been received for grants from the small fund built up from film company donations:
Friends of The Ramshorn – Application for £1,000 approved in full. ACTION: Niall to arrange via Treasurer.
‘Merchant City Park’ – Request for £2,500 for legal expenses deferred since the planning application was now in the hands of the Scottish Government Reporter and further legal intervention was impossible at this stage. No action required since members of MCP were in attendance and notified of the decision.
Impact Arts – Request for £2,500 for its youth diversionary project ‘Cashback to the Future’ deferred since the sub-committee wanted more details of the benefits for youngsters in the MCTCC area, including anti-social behaviour by youngsters around the St Enoch Centre. ACTION: Niall to notify applicant.
Project Ability – Preference is to have defibrillator available 24/7 and not locked away when premises are closed. Agreed to donate £800 of the requested £1,000. The full amount would be granted should the device be readily accessible at all times. ACTION: Scott to discuss with PA Director.
Scott reported that the Community Council’s press release on its response to GCC’s public consultation had been issued, carried on Glasgow Live and was due to be published in the Evening Times
11. UCI – World Cycling Championships
Ros reported that Khalid Billa of the Chilli Thrill & Grill, 35 High Street, had asked for assistance regarding a claim for lost trade due to the UCI World Cycling Championships. She has shared this request with Elected Members and UCI organisers.
12. TREASURER’S ANNUAL REPORT
Tam will forward the Treasurer’s Annual Report to the independent auditor for preparation and submission to the AGM (See below). ACTION: Tam
13. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING AND ELECTIONS TO COMMUNITY COUNCIL
There were 11 validated nominations for 11 vacancies.
The AGM and uncontested election meeting will take place on Tuesday 31 October at 6.30 pm in Committee Room 1, Glasgow City Chambers.
Candidates elected to serve on the Community Council will do so until the next scheduled full election in October 2027.
Tam urged Community Councillors to encourage as many members of the public as possible to attend. ACTION: ALL