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Trongate 103, Merchant City, Glasgow

As the first phase of a redevelopment programme to create an Arts Quarter on the southern edge of the Merchant City within Glasgow city centre, Trongate 103 has been formed as a new creative hub giving access to linked galleries, a restaurant, exhibition areas and workshops, as well as providing visitors with an introduction to a large cross section of the arts in Glasgow.

The site consisted of 3 B-listed buildings, which needed a substantial quantity of repairwork internally and externally, as well as the upgrading of services prior to any significant internal alterations could begin.

At street level, the building has been opened up with the introduction of full height shop-front glazing on all elevations to allow a much more accessible relationship with the streetscape and to encourage public interaction with the building,

Internally, an existing building of the scale of Trongate 103 [six storeys tall and filling an entire city block] has multiple layers and organisational challenges, with the new facility needing to provide a sense of invitation to the public, as well as a legible means of navigating through it to maximise its ease of use. To overcome this, two atrium style volumes have been introduced into the horseshoe arrangement of the existing buildings – a public double height volume at ground level linking gallery spaces with the entrance concourse, whilst at 2nd Floor a semi public triple height volume opens out from the arts organisations making visible how each interacts with the building.