Some businesses in Glasgow are doing rather well, they have a clear focus on growth and development and they proudly characterise the city’s motto to “Let Glasgow Flourish”. Their success brings deserved integrity and proficiency that in turn attracts more work and creates more jobs.
It can also as was the case with CRGP Ltd, a company of architects and surveyors, put pressure on working space. And from a leafy street in the West End of the city this company made a move in the first week of the year to new premises in Kinning Park.
CRGP external CRGP Studio
This area has had a past where it became a centre for the production of chocolate biscuits and newspapers but it also had many warehouses and buildings that deserved a better life. Its future looks much more positive and there is currently evidence of redevelopment and refurbishment.
Stanley Street School / The Schoolhouse in Portman Street is where the new offices of CRGP are located and this fine old building has been transformed inside to provide the technological requirements of today while retaining features such as Victorian folding glass screens, tall ceilings and original oak flooring. The company has found a new home that is ideally suited to the mindset of its employees but more important it now has the space to engage more staff and develop its business.
Alan Stewart is a director of CRGP and he has had special responsibilities for the company’s property: “The design and development consultancy work we have in the pipeline gives us a positive feeling about the coming years. In all aspects of our business whether it be quantity surveying, building surveying, architecture or project management we are experiencing growth.
“We have an ongoing and expanding commitment in major contracts with the MoD and we are growing our business in the areas of nursing homes, commercial development, and public and private sector residential development. The potential was such that we simply required more space so that we could assist in retaining our existing staff and engage more staff to meet our current and future obligations.”
The new premises are similar to those the company has just left in the West End. They are old and are packed with character and because of the robust nature of the building it has been possible to create a large open space on their third floor position. The 8500sq.ft. floorplate provides almost double the previous space and columns running down the central spine only punctuate the open-plan.
“I believe having the whole area opened up is working very well,” says Alan Stewart. “The benefits will become apparent as the year goes on. It puts all the directors and staff together rather than being round corners or in their own offices and it will promote the opportunity for greater communication and cross fertilisation of expertise. Immediately, we have found that having project management and the architecture department on the one level is beneficial to each side as they are able to learn from each other.”
Loft Office Limited acquired the school and its subsequent regeneration has seen Glasgow City Council occupy two of its floors. The area is perhaps not as sophisticated as parts of Glasgow’s West End, however, there are many encouraging signs that show regeneration and redevelopment projects on redundant buildings that are sure to attract progressive, forward-thinking companies. For example, a developer has purchased the building next door to Stanley Street School and initial plans suggest that it will be transformed into offices and residential accommodation.
Glasgow and its businesses would appear to be flourishing in all areas.