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Last Updated: Thursday, 20 March 2008, 18:00 GMT
Burrell designers Go Ape at plans
Burrell Collection
The Burrell boasts a collection of 8,000 art works
Two of the architects of the Burrell Collection have spoken out against the proposed development of a treetop adventure playground in Pollok Park.

Sir Barry Gasson and John Meunier said the Go Ape plans would destroy the "magic" of the collection.

Councillors are to visit the site on Tuesday and will hear directly from the applicant, supporters and objectors.

Go Ape said it would work with the local community to address any concerns it may have.

The adventure course would be built in the north wood, behind the Burrell Collection.

Its architect, Sir Barry Gasson, said the building's design was chosen because it was the only one which "visually engaged with the north wood".

We have always acknowledged the ethos behind the Burrell building and collection that makes Pollok Park so special
Go Ape spokesperson

He said the construction of a playpark would hamper the view from the Burrell Collection, as well as affecting the light filtering into the building.

"It is fundamental that this north wood - old woodland on record for 250 years - is left undisturbed," he said.

"Once the 21st Century moves into these woods, then the Burrell will be different.

"Its magic will be gone."

John Meunier, now professor of Architecture at Arizona University, said: "We wanted a design that would celebrate its sitting in Pollok Park, with views not only from the outside but from the inside.

"We did not want to design a closed box.

"It would seem that concerns about proposed uses of the woods is appropriate, should they reduce its light filtering capacity and/or the wood's participation in the museum experience."

'Inaccurate information'

The Go Ape proposal has been recommended for approval by planning officials, subject to conditions.

However, a campaign against the course has led to 881 objections and public protests.

Objectors, which include the National Trust for Scotland and Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, claim the development would result in noise and be detrimental to the area's conservation status.

Glasgow City Council has received 148 letters in support of the proposals - including a submission from Mohammad Sarwar MP.

Supporters said it would encourage children to be more active in the outdoors and attract tourists.

Go Ape demonstration Pollok Park
The Go Ape plan led to demonstrations in Pollok Park

A spokesperson for Go Ape said: "We have always acknowledged the great environmental and cultural qualities, including the ethos behind the Burrell building and collection, that makes Pollok Park so special.

"At Go Ape, we are keen to keep listening to concerns that people may have and to work closely with the local community to help ensure that any concerns are addressed wherever possible.

"However, this has been hampered at times by inaccurate information that has been widely circulated about our planned course."

Under the plans, the city council would lease the area of park to Go Ape for 21 years, for an eventual return of 8% of the firm's gross turnover.

The treetop course would cater for over-10s and open between 0800 to 2100, seven days a week.

Pollok Country Park was gifted to the city of Glasgow by the Maxwell family, who owned the Old Pollok Estate.

The park was voted Best in Britain last year.

Council postpones Go Ape decision
04 Mar 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Protest goes 'ape' over park plan
17 Feb 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West
Community campaign to save park
22 Jan 08 |  Glasgow, Lanarkshire and West

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