Saturday, 29 September 2012

Catching up

The magnificent Silverburn Shopping Centre
You know, I'm just sitting here with a nice wee cup of tea and a biscuit looking at my personal copy of Project Scotland, the Scottish Construction Industry News Magazine, which is filled with wonderful stories about the men who are making Scotland great - the Action Men of the construction industry.  They are the people with the yellow hats who turn developers' dreams into fabulous reality creating such gems as the Braehead Shopping Centre and its deadly arch-rival, Silverburn Shopping Centre.  Both of these are totally unique!  They represent the most successful developments in Scotland - or perhaps in the whole of Europe!  More popular than going to church or most football teams - that's saying something about the brains behind retail these days. Fabulous! 

I'm also reading Dr Stewartie Milne's fabulous new timber systems aimed at the zero carbon market in 2016. It will be used to create some of the most amazing developments ever seen on Scotland - and it must be cheap or Wee Stewartie wouldn't be promoting it. It's a great advert for the Scottish property and construction sector!  Fantastic, and completely steeped in cost-cutting innovation! Beautiful too! There’s nothing like a nice bit of wood!
Slum clearance for the Commonwealth Games

There's a lot of talk these days asking if Glasgow 2014 can take up the baton dropped by the London Olympics. Project Scotland has an exciting breakdown of what is involved in building a Commonwealth Games fit for the 65,000 athletes who will come here to strut their stuff and dance before the Queen.  It's a great opportunity for foreign types to find out about how we go about creating great projects and that sense of 'let nothing stand in our way' that ensures success.  I'm thinking of the clearance of gypsies, tinkers, show people and other troublemakers from their slum properties - this is an area in which Glasgow City Council has excelled and my hearty congratulations go out to them for their focus and endeavour in this regard. Clearing the ground for RMJM’s terrific masterplan was essential. As any experienced planner will tell you, a strong masterplan is one that sweeps away existing features rather than trying to keep old buildings, trees or frogs. Reptiles can bring an area into disrepute after all - they tried that at Dr Donald's Golf Course from Heaven - but failed.

On a different tack, I noticed that Seona Reid has announced her retirement as Head Teacher at Glasgow School of Art following my devastating article on the missed opportunities for redevelopment on Garterhill.  She will be remembered as the Captain on the Bridge when the decision was made to demolish Keppies great modern buildings to the north of Renfrew Street instead of the old Mackintosh building which is an eyesore. Good riddance!
Wee Dr Stewartie Milne's HQ
I was supposed to be in Aberdeen again yesterday but it didn't work out.  It's a long journey for me and I was looking forward to passing Wee Dr Stewartie Milne’s Headquarters.  I wondered if I could keep me hands on the wheel as I passed those glistening flagpoles.  I wanted to stand to attention and salute but I might have crashed the car.  He is so great and his developments are so classy!  Sitting at work yesterday afternoon though I had another idea!

When I got back home I decided to climb the tree at the bottom of the garden. I don't know what came over me but I got my compass, map and notebook, rolled my trousers up above the knees and climbed to the very top of the tree. Once there, my superior planning and geographical skills came into play. I calculated the exact bearing and direction to Aberdeen from Auchterness, in fact to the Stewart Milne Headquarters on the outskirts of the city at Westhill - just off Enterprise Drive!  Slowly I arose facing that glorious location - balancing carefully until I was standing clear on the topmost branch. I was completely erect!  I knew I was in contact with the Entity - again.  I thought I could see its lights sparkling on the low cloud over the city.  Then I heard someone shouting, "Are you alright Mr Thompson?"  It was Mavis from the shop - she must have good eyesight. Too good!

So I reassured her that I was fine and climbed carefully back down the tree and went into the house and wrote this note. 
I must do it all again soon!  Cheeribye for now!

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