John Richards Landscape Architects  
  Saracen Cross  Glasgow


For centuries, Saracen Cross has been a crossroads,
historically on the old coaching routes that ran through
Glasgow. During the Victorian period the surrounding area
housed vast industrial factories which processed raw
materials for both the rail and armaments industries. The
most famous of the areas industrial plants was the
Saracen Iron Foundry from which the square obtained its
name. However a decline in demand after World War Two
led to the area falling into decline. Nevertheless the area
has always retained a sense of pride among the local
community, knowing that this small corner of Glasgow
played a part in some of the greatest engineering feats of
the century.


Originally, the redevelopment of the square was part of a
masterplan which included the development of shops and
housing to the western edge of the new square. During
1999 we worked in close collaboration with Allan Murray
Architects and the artist Janet Hodgeson to redesign the
square as part of Glasgow’s 1999 City of Culture


Our proposals developed as a response to the areas
architectural and industrial heritage. The floorscape was
designed to reflect the fluidity of the work of the Saracen
Iron Works, and as part of the project, the existing
Saracen Iron Works fountain was retained in its original
location and restored to form a focus within the square.
The western edge of the square was also developed into a
temporary garden installation which is based on the
building footprint of future shops and housing.



John Richards Landscape Architects     215 Balgreen Road  Edinburgh  EH11 2RZ     Tel  0131 337 3336     Email

© John Richards Landscape Architects, 2009