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Hutchesontown C was the name given to a so-called Comprehensive Development Area (CDA) of an area of Hutchesontownmarker, a district in the city of Glasgowmarker, Scotlandmarker. Its centrepiece was a 20 storey block at 16-32 Queen Elizabeth Square, designed by Sir Basil Spence.

The aim was to replace of slums in Hutchesontown with new low and high rise housing, schools and shops. The development consisted of three phases — A, B and C — each designed by a different architect.

Hutchesontown C was Sir Basil Spence’s commission and comprised 400 individual homes in all. Opened by Queen Elizabeth II, the design of the central block was inspired by Le Corbusier’s giant maisonette blocks in Marseillemarker. It was described as 'The Hanging Gardens of the Gorbalsmarker', a direct reference to the large balconies arranged in groups of four throughout the building. Spence's own vision was that on Tuesdays (that is, a wash-day) the washing hanging from balconies would resemble "a ship in full sail", a reference to Glasgow's shipbuilding heritage.

The reality proved less glamorous as the maintenance required for such a large and complex structure was underestimated from the beginning. This, coupled with the attendant problems of vandalism and the uncompromising design, meant that by the 1980s the complex had become a by-word for all that was worst in public sector housing. Nonetheless, it was named by the architectural conservation organisation DoCoMoMo as one of Scotland's key modernist monuments in 1993.

That same year, faced with an ever increasing maintenance bill and associated social problems, the local authority had the structure demolished, spectacularly dynamiting the entire building. As with the structure itself, the manner of demolition was controversial: one person was fatally injured in the process.


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