FOR a mere hole in the ground, it certainly attracted a lot of attention.

It was there for some 15 years, dominating the corner of Argyle Street and Hope Street in Glasgow.

It had “amused and bemused the citizens of the dear green place”, Glasgow Herald reporter John Easton noted in March, 1984. “It has also taxed the imagination of developers. The cynics claimed that the gap could not be bridged.”

Furthermore, there had been a time when Glaswegians had been permitted behind the hoardings to eat their sandwiches on platforms surrounding the site.

But now the hole was no more. Work had been going on for six months to create the foundations of an £18 million office and shopping development, in what was described as a joint venture of modern technology by Lilley Construction and an independent Scottish group, Developments Commercial and Industrial.

Now, on March 27, Lord Provost Dr Michael Kelly, clad in hard hat and wellingtons, took control of a £250,000 rig and drove the last pile almost 150ft below the level of Argyle Street.

Allan Campbell Fraser, chairman of DCI, could not conceal his delight. Raising his voice so that he could be heard above the noise of the rig, he called out to Dr Kelly: “We have succeeded where others have failed. A blight on the city is about to be removed.”

The Herald reported that the new development of two seven-storey office blocks was expected to be ready by the year’s end.

The junction of Hope Street and Argyle Street, seen here in May 1979, remains one of the city’s busiest.

That year had seen various alterations being made to render the junction safer for its substantial numbers of daily pedestrians.

Read more: Herald Diary