Historically known as a centre for shipbuilding and manufacturing, today Glasgow is in the top three leading tech cities in the UK outside of London.

In the last 12 months, our analysis shows almost 6,000 graduates have moved into tech jobs in the city, making up almost one-quarter (23 per cent) of the graduates who go into employment.

Furthermore, there is a growing success story when looking at spin-out companies from the city’s academic institutions, with the level of fundraising by companies that have spun out increasing by over 300% in 2021 on the previous year. As it stands today, Glasgow City Region counts for nearly half (46%) of all new jobs created in Scotland. This is a significant market share and should not be taken for granted.

What the numbers tell us is that we, in Glasgow, are doing well at developing talent. We’re also getting ever better at supporting tech start-ups. Our universities are playing a key role in business start-up support by financing and managing incubator space at the likes of Glasgow City Innovation District (GCID). What the city faces now is a moment in time to really harness this talent and growth. The property sector plays a crucial part in this.

Beyond incubator space, we need to consider whether the standing stock in our city centre provides ample relevant commercial space to keep businesses in Glasgow and attract new occupiers.

Equally important is whether we are able to house talent, encourage local talent to remain in Glasgow and enable global occupiers with relocation mandates to give Glasgow serious consideration.

And we need to ask how and where will this talent and the people who make Glasgow want to spend their time, whether shopping and eating out, for culture and music or taking exercise and watching live sport.

Repurposing older buildings will play a key part in improving neighbourhoods in which to live and work, breathing new life into Glasgow city centre.

The redevelopment of Buchanan Galleries, owned by Land Securities (LandSec), has the potential to reinvigorate the city centre, connecting the area with its surroundings, and creating a new and exciting retail, leisure and cultural destination with new routes and public spaces.

Workplace and residential uses at upper levels will create the vitality and viability to help refocus the role of the city centre, and provide space to accommodate about 10-15,000 jobs in that area. This changing perspective is further evidenced by the restoration of Glasgow’s Met Tower, a 14-storey, Grade B-listed building in the heart of the city centre that is set to become a new hub for established and emerging tech and digital businesses.

As we look to try to continue the transformation of city centres post-Covid, owners of larger mixed-use development sites in Glasgow are going to have to figure out how to deliver schemes that clearly communicate this to the occupier.

Development around Merchant City, including the redevelopment of St Enoch shopping centre, currently planned to deliver over 1,700 homes alongside new office space, and 100 low-carbon homes planned on a former car park site on Ingram Street, will give a much-needed boost to the city centre’s residential offering.

Slightly beyond the centre, Dundashill is a 600-home master plan that will be delivered over a number of years at Port Dundas, as part of wider regeneration of the area that aims to connect the city centre with north Glasgow. Gateway schemes linking to the Transformational Regeneration Areas to the north and south of the city centre, and trying to bridge the barrier created by the M8, will be critical to the creation of 20-minute neighbourhoods at the edge of the city centre.

Raising what is currently a low residential occupancy in Glasgow city centre is key in a wider mixed-use regeneration and the delivery of build to rent will be significant in this.

So, too, is improving the streetscape, making it safer for cyclists and pedestrians, in turn promoting active travel and inviting people to spend time in the city centre.

The central belt region contains over 100,000 businesses – nearly 60% of the total active firms in Scotland – which together account for a combined GVA of nearly £100 billion, the largest of any region in the UK outside London. But Glasgow is more than just an important economic centre.

In 2019, it was ranked the UK’s top cultural and creative city by the European Commission, and hosted in recent years COP26 in November 2021, the 2014 Commonwealth Games and the 2018 European Championships that all contributed towards Glasgow’s position on the global stage.

We can’t afford to lose momentum and now is the moment to harness it. We need public and private partnership, and strong leadership from the council to unlock potential. It’s true – people make Glasgow. Let’s create the spaces and places they want to live.

David Cobban is head of office and director of property firm Savills in Glasgow