Safedem blows down Glasgow tower block – video

Aaron Morby 12 years ago
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Demolition specialist Safedem has toppled another major block of flats in Glasgow using 275 kilos of high explosive.

Thousands of people gathered to watch the demolition of the 30-storey triple block in the Red Road estate in the north of the city on Sunday.

The job was made all the more complicated  because of its steel frame construction.

The demolition marks the beginning of the end of one of Britain’s most controversial housing developments. The remaining seven multi-storey blocks will be demolished over the next five years.

Designed in 1962 by architect Sam Bunton for Glasgow Corporation, the flats were constructed between 1964 and 1969. They were of unusual construction, being the only steel-framed high-rise structures in Glasgow.

At the time of construction in the mid 1960s the Red Road tower blocks were among the tallest residential buildings in Europe.

The demolition forms part of a £60m regeneration plan by the flats’ owners the Glasgow Housing Association (GHA), and partners.

The controlled explosion dropped the Red Road housing block without damaging the nearby road, which will be needed to transport steel and rubble from the site during the next few months.

GHA’s executive director of development and regeneration Alex McGuire said: “The Red Road flats were popular in their day and are known around the world, but their time has come to an end. We’re pleased the demolition of the first of the Red Road blocks went according to plan.”

The remaining seven multi-storey builds in the area are to be demolished by 2017.

The bottom storeys of the block are still intact and will be demolished using machines.The clear-up operation will take several months to complete with the steel removed and recycled and the remaining rubble crushed and used as foundations for roads and buildings.

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