Glasgow’s history is shown through what’s left behind: the cranes that still sit along Clyde bank, the skeletons of decrepit warehouses, the grand sandstone buildings of old wealth. The River Clyde in particular continues to embody Glasgow’s past, linking its disjointed elements. This thesis is focused on the reuse of derelict urban space along Glasgow’s primary waterway, the River Clyde, to reweave the city’s social fabric. The site I have chosen for the thesis sits along and over the Clyde where the City Union rail used to run. The site itself establishes the first part of the proposed programme – which focuses on re-building the connections the river once had to the people who live all over Glasgow. The old railway line will become a new pedestrian/cycle route to reconnect the south side and north side of Glasgow, as well the east/west edges.
The second part of the programme moves beyond physical connection towards overcoming the social divides the physical disconnect created. This aspect will focus on the old site of Paddy’s Market under the viaducts, a linchpin for the city. The scheme will revitalise the market community that once existed by introducing new market spaces that will accommodate individual sellers and house a permanent food market. The food market will be supplied by a hydroponic farm that will use the Clyde as its water source and grow on City Union bridge, doubling as a botanical garden.
Connecting these elements will be the technology thesis: water circulation as lighting. These clear water pipes will run between the purification section of the building, through the market to provide sufficient light, and will draw paths and routes to spaces like the garden, and rooftop city connection, whilst delivering water to the necessary places. My project will grant the river new purpose, by exploring the movement of water, the movement of people, and in turn a re-connection of identity. This thesis embodies a building program that revives the narrative of the Glasgow River Clyde as a central piece of the city and locus of community.