IT is Scotland's home for modern artwork and has showcased masterpieces in Edinburgh for decades.

But now some of the country's best contemporary artworks are set to be transported to Glasgow under moves to establish a major new gallery in the Kelvin Hall.

Currently the works belonging to the National Galleries of Scotland (NGS) are displayed in Edinburgh over two sites at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art attracting around 220,000 and 236,000 visitors a year respectively.

The proposed Kelvin Hall plan would see a NGS building in Glasgow for the first time.

It is thought the relocation of some of its collection to Scotland's largest city will mean thousands more art aficionados will be able to enjoy the classic works each year.

The plan is to expand the current Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art to a third site rather than 'downgrade' the existing Edinburgh venues. 

Katrina Brown, director of the leading contemporary art gallery The Common Guild, welcomed the move and said the expanded gallery would allow more artworks to be displayed.

She said: "One of the things that Glasgow is lacking is a large scale exhibition space for contemporary work, and it is fantastic to think there will be more space for that.

"The question will be how it is resourced in what is at the moment an under-resourced contemporary art sector."

The new gallery space would be in the second phase of the major revamp of the Kelvin Hall, formerly a transport museum, which sits in the heart of Glasgow's west end and is undergoing a £70 million revamp.

The display in Glasgow would acknowledge the city as the home and inspiration for several Turner Prize winning artists and a whole generation of acclaimed contemporary artists, many of whom attended Glasgow School of Art.

The National Galleries of Scotland is working with Glasgow Life - the arms-length body that runs the city's museums and galleries - to transfer the collection to Glasgow but a spokesman said said there were no plans to close the existing modern art galleries in Edinburgh.

She said: "NGS already has a wide-ranging and successful partnership with Glasgow Life which has resulted in sharing our collections, exhibitions and our first joint acquisition, a painting by James Guthrie acquired in 2012.

"Building on the huge success of Generation, a nationwide celebration of Scottish contemporary art held in 2014, in which Glasgow Life was one of our principal partners, we have been looking at opportunities for future collaborations.

"The exciting developments at Kelvin Hall is part of the ongoing discussions we are having with Glasgow about showcasing contemporary art across Scotland and we look forward to announcing details in due course."

This week, the executive committee of Glasgow City Council will vote on a key stage of the multi-million pound redevelopment of the Kelvin Hall, in particular a £8m plan for a new roof for the building, which will house the museum collections of the University of Glasgow, the Moving Image Archive of the National Library of Scotland, and a large new gym complex.

Revamping the large building's roof is a key stage in opening up the entire structure for a series of uses and displays in the future, councillors will hear, including the proposed partnership with the NGS.

The ambitious plans, developed by the council and Glasgow Life, led by chief executive Bridget McConnell, hope to make Kelvin Hall, and the nearby Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum, rival the Kensington cultural quarter in London.

Discussions have already taken place between the NGS, led by Sir John Leighton, and Glasgow Life, which run Glasgow's museums, libraries and galleries.

Currently the development of Kelvin Hall is completing its £35m first phase: two large vaulted areas and a front sandstone block of accommodation is to be revamped in future developments, with space measuring more than 9000 square metres.

Works are currently progressing on site and are on schedule to complete in the summer of 2016 and the building will open to the public in August this year.

For the roof revamp, if approved, Glasgow City Council will contribute a total of £6.2m, as well as £2m from the Scottish Government.

It the second phase of redevelopment, again costing around £34m, that will include the tie-in with the National Galleries of Scotland for "contemporary art galleries with displays of varying duration."

The council papers say: "The partnership working that led to the delivery of Phase 1 provides a strong foundation for the future development of the partnership and the remaining 50% of the building footprint.

"The development of future phases of Kelvin Hall involves the current partners, with the addition of the National Gallery of Scotland, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Royal Highland Fusiliers Museum."

There are also plans for the Hunterian Museum and Art Gallery to move to Kelvin Hall, a Charles Rennie Mackintosh museum, and events space and further temporary exhibition spaces.