Glasgow 2014: U-turn on Red Road flats demolition

Commonwealth-Games-glasgow-2014Commonwealth Games organisers have scrapped controversial plans to demolish the Red Road flats as part of the Glasgow 2014 opening ceremony.

Games chiefs had intended to raze five of the six remaining 1960s Red Road tower blocks at the event on 23 July, with the footage beamed into Celtic Park, where the ceremony will take place, and to an estimated global TV audience of more than one billion.

Organisers said the plan, unveiled on 3 April, would mark an important part of the city’s social history. But it attracted fierce opposition from critics, who said it was inappropriate and insensitive to former residents and to the asylum seekers who occupy the sixth block. A petition calling for the plans to be dropped attracted more than 17,000 signatures.

Glasgow 2014 chief executive David Grevemberg said yesterday the decision to cancel the demolition had been taken because of “safety and security” concerns that had emerged over the past few days.

Mr Grevemberg said: “The decision to feature the live demolition of five Red Road blocks within the opening ceremony was planned both as commemoration of a part of Glasgow’s social history as well as a statement of regeneration.

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