Robert Burns is the topic of heated debate in Glasgow's George Square


Click to follow
The Independent Culture

This week, Glasgow City Council put six eminent teams of architects through the ringer by asking them a single, highly fraught question: how would they transform George Square into a public space fit for the 21st century?

The City Council's leader, Gordon Matheson, wants to clear the square of its 13 monuments, referring to them as "unknown, lifeless relics from a bygone area". These historic nobodies include Robert Burns and Sir Walter Scott.

Scotland has, of late, revealed an outstanding ability to make hashes of major public space redevelopments.

The technicolor landscape fantasia visualised by Diller Scofidio + Renfro in Aberdeen's Union Terrace Gardens was spiked by the council.

The original redesign of Colquhoun Square, in Helensburgh by Austin Smith Lord who proposed a curving roadway was scrapped.

Let's hope that this new revenue-led strategy does not bankrupt its unique Glaswegian character.