GEORGE SQUARE: Future is uncertain.
John McAslan of John McAslan and Partners – whose firm won a high profile competition to redesign Glasgow's George Square – met around 20 people in the rain to hear their views.
He revealed two slight design changes, of more greenery and less limestone, to create a less linear approach.
Mr McAslan said he wanted to "rescue" the project by listening to and engaging with residents.
As reported this month, Gordon Matheson pulled the plug on plans for a £15 million makeover of the square, despite a winning design being chosen.
Rivals reportedly claimed Councillor Matheson dropped the redevelopment after his preferred design option did not win.
Mr McAslan said the decision had undermined the competition process, but he was willing to engage with plans for the Square. He said: "I would like to see something happen. I am from Glasgow, I was born in Glasgow, all my family is from Glasgow, my great-grandfather wrote the history of Glasgow in 1920, so it is in my blood, and to me you wouldn't get a better commission than George Square, because it is where I am from.
"It is all very personal. It is not about money it is about trying to do what you think is the right thing.
"It [the decision] undermines the process, it undermines his officers, it undermines the jury, but I would like to draw a line under it."
Mr McAslan said he was hopeful of a meeting with Mr Matheson in order to meet a "positive outcome".
On January 9, when the designs went on display at the Lighthouse centre in Glasgow, Mr Matheson said the public were behind the changes, including a controversial plan to remove the historic statues.
However, when Mr McAslan's design was named the winner, Mr Matheson made a very public U-turn, claiming public opinion had led him to scrap the project in favour of a smaller scale upgrade in time for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
Michael Doran, 56, from Pollok, Glasgow, said: "It would be great if they could visualise it as a piazza, a place where people can stand about, even enter- tainment, there are plenty of buskers in Glasgow."
Helen Reeves, 44, from the south side of Glasgow said the U-turn was embarrassing for the city. She said: "I think it is a real shame to have an initial com-petition take place and then they just say 'no, we have decided not to'."
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